• Cooper Metals’ ‘Mt Isa East’ project is near Carnaby Resources’ company-making Nil Desperandum IOCG discovery
  • Small copper-gold mine developer Alara Resources now almost +400% year-to-date
  • Empire, Gold Mountain and Heavy Minerals gain on positive exploration results

Here are the biggest small cap resources winners in early trade, Monday February 7.



An interesting nearology play.

CPM’s ‘Mt Isa East’ just 10km from Carnaby Resources’ (ASX:CNB) company making Nil Desperandum IOCG discovery, in the same rocks.

New rock chip sampling at several Mt Isa East prospects continues to “build an exciting picture of the broader copper-gold potential of the project area”, CPM says.

Rock chips up to 9.85% copper and 2.58g/t gold along the historical 1.5km-long ‘King Solomon’ trend indicating higher gold potential than previously envisaged.

More old workings were found at ‘Python’, with 8.53% Cu and 0.11g/t Au returned from rock chip samples near a historical mine shaft.

“The highest gold result to date of 2.58g/t Au at King Solomon highlights the strong gold potential of the prospect, which was mainly exploited by historical miners for the copper mineralisation,” CPM managing director and former explorer of the year Ian Warland says.

“At Python, the footprint of the old workings and Cu mineralisation continues to grow as field teams continue to explore the area.

“Initial field reconnaissance at other prospects has been very encouraging including Yarraman area, which returned up to 20.2% Cu from an iron oxide gossan hosted in a significant shear zone within mafic rocks, which are often spatially associated with Cu-Au mineralisation in the region.”

A high-powered ground electromagnetic survey at Python is underway.

EM surveys map sub-surface changes in electrical conductivity and are useful – but not perfect — tools for finding mineral deposits.

CPM is planning to move into less explored areas of the prospective Mary Kathleen Domain with airborne electromagnetic survey to start after the wet season.

CPM is up 180% on its late 2021 listing price of 20c per share.



The small and – until recently — unassuming copper-gold mine developer is now almost +400% year-to-date.

AUQ is ramping up to first production in late 2022/early 2023 from the 51% owned ‘Al Wash-hi–Majaza’ copper-gold project in Oman.

Early mining has now kicked off, comprising pre-stripping of waste from the first stage of the open pit.

Pre-stripping will continue through the first quarter of calendar 2022, with ore mining projected to begin during the June 2022 quarter.

This work is being undertaken by 35% owned primary contractor Alara Resources LLC.

“With initial mining activities, including pre-stripping of waste material, now underway, the project is just months away from becoming an ore-producing mine,” Alara managing director Atmavireshwar Sthapak says.

“An added bonus is that Alara Resources LLC (ARL), an Alara joint venture company in Oman, has been contracted to undertake these works.

“This contract demonstrates that ARL, in which Alara holds a 35% stake, is establishing itself as major exploration and mining service provider in Middle East.”

A revised DFS envisaged a smallish open pit operation producing 35,000tpa concentrate a year for ~80,000t copper and 21,800oz gold over 10 years. It will cost about US$60m to build.

At a $US9,500/t copper price, project EBITDA is ~$US370m, AUQ says.

AUQ also has several larger, less advanced development projects on the go.

These include an interest in the ‘Khnaiguiyah’ zinc-copper project in Saudi Arabia, where the company is trying to secure a mining licence re-issue.



The $16m market cap explorer was busy in 2021, drilling +14,000m at its ‘Penny’s and Yuinmery’ projects in WA. 2022 will bring more of the same, it says.

It is starting to pay off. ERL today announced a 31m sulphide hit in drilling at Yuimery’s ‘YT01’ prospect, with assays pending.

Diamond hole YDD22-01 was designed to target extensions to previously intercepted copper-nickel-PGE mineralisation of 36m @ 0.34% Cu, 0.07% Ni, 0.16% Pd, 0.03% Pt and 0.07g/t Au from 188m.

“An excellent result from the first drill hole for 2022 at the Yuinmery project,” Empire managing director Sean Richardson says.

“YT01 was identified by the company in late 2019 and has progressed well through to the diamond drilling phase.

“The presence of strong sulphides within ultramafic rocks demonstrates the potential for the prospect to host economic mineralisation.”

The diamond drilling program continues at Yuinmery, with the second hole for 2022 underway (YDD22-02) targeting down plunge extensions to the ‘Smiths Well’ prospect.

ERL is up 40% year-to-date. It had $2.6m in the bank at the end of December.



Porphyry hunter GMN has returned “highest gold assays to date” from drilling at the ‘Mt Wipi’ project in remote PNG.

Gold assay results have been received for holes ‘MWD003’ and ‘MWD004’ with gold mineralisation intersected in both holes, including:

  • 1m @ 6.54g/t Au from 115m (MWD003)
  • 18m of 0.21g/t Au1 from 240m (MWD004)

Anomalous copper, gold, and silver mineralisation were recorded throughout the entire length of MWD003, with multi-element analysis indicating it was likely drilled on the periphery of a porphyry system, GMN says.

“These gold intercepts and associated alteration contained within broad zones of mineralisation are in my opinion very significant and build my confidence that we are getting closer to a major find,” GMN CEO Tim Cameron says.

“The ongoing discovery of highly mineralised rock chip results from the Mt Wipi – Sak Creek – Monoyal structural corridor also reinforce our belief that the broader Wabag Project is highly prospective and additional targets will emerge.”

GMN has completed four holes at Mt Wipi, with a fifth hole (MWD005), currently nearing completion.

The $24m market cap stock is down 20% year-to-date. It had $1.9m in the bank at the end of December.



More popular drilling results, this time from WA mineral sands explorer HVY.

Assay results for the 2021 drilling campaign at the ‘Port Gregory’ garnet project have been received and processed, with numerous intercepts “exceeding expectations both in grade and thickness”.

Notable intersections include:

  • 17.9% THM over 13m from surface (PGAC0025A)
  • 11.3% THM over 22.5m from 12m downhole (PGAC0067), and
  • 13.3% THM over 12m from surface (PGAC0088)

“The intercepts from the 2021 campaign are exceptional, not only in grade but also in thickness and the shallow depth,” HVY CEO Nic Matich says.

“These characteristics are why this style of deposit, which is analogous to those in the region (GMA & RDG), are amenable to low CAPEX and OPEX mining operations.

“With a large quantum of assay results returned, we have been able to visually estimate the garnet fraction of the THM to be approximately 65% – 75% with 10% – 20% contained Ilmenite in numerous intervals.

“The garnet percentage is over one and a half times that reported by GMA. This is an extremely positive outcome and bodes well for the Mineral Resource Estimate which utilised a conservative garnet percentage of 46%.”

A maiden resource is due towards the end of this quarter.

The recently listed $9m market cap minnow is up 45% year-to-date. It had $3.6m in the bank at the end of December.