Rio Tinto nearology update: land grabs and underwhelming results
Drilling at Sipa Resources’ project in the Paterson province of Western Australia has discovered a new style of mineralisation for the area – but hit no significant copper or gold.
Investors weren’t happy, with Sipa’s share price falling as much as 30 per cent to 0.8c on the news.
The 500m diamond drill hole at the Obelisk prospect within Sipa’s Paterson North project was designed to test a new anomaly.
The drill hole also didn’t hit any significant gold or copper, with best assays including 84 parts per billion (ppb) gold and 1630 parts per million (ppm) copper.
1000 ppb equals 1 gram per tonne.
But Sipa managing director Lynda Burnett said a new mineralisation style indicated the mineral system at Obelisk was potentially even more “complex and prospective” than previously thought.
“Given its proximity to the reported Rio Tinto discovery and the potential scale of the discovery opportunities in this area, we are very much looking forward to the next phase of exploration – which will include an airborne electromagnetic survey commencing early next year before we get the drill rig back next field season,” she said.
Sipa told investors that airborne electromagnetic may have played a significant part in Rio Tinto’s rumoured Weenoo discovery, just 10km to the west of Sipa’s landholdings.
Speculation has put the Paterson province on the map as an exploration hotspot, with rumours of a massive copper discovery by Rio Tinto (ASX:RIO) prompting other miners to snatch up surrounding exploration ground.
Recent aerial images showed a new camp, drill rigs, a helicopter landing site and other infrastructure at the Rio project, but the mining giant is playing its cards close to its chest for now.
Marindi snatches up more ground in the Paterson
Marindi Metals Limited (ASX: MZN) has expanded its Paterson Province landholding to about 1,200sqkm.
The explorer’s share price was steady at 0.5c on the news.
This includes new tenements around Antipa Resources’ (ASX:AZY) Citadel project which is being explored under joint venture with Rio.
Marindi managing director Simon Lawson said that while the company’s core focus remains on exploring and developing its Southern Forrestania gold project in southern Western Australia, the expansion of the Paterson tenement package represented a “compelling strategic commercial opportunity”.
Petratherm explores near BHP copper discovery
Petratherm (ASX:PTR) has secured an 848 square kilometre exploration licence application over part of the “Mabel Creek Inlier”, a few hundred kilometres north west of BHP’s (ASX:BHP) spectacular Oak Dam copper discovery.
The explorer’s share price was steady at 3c on the news.
Petratherm chairman Derek Carter actually led the team which discovered the nearby Prominent Hill deposit, which currently produces over 100,000 tonnes of copper per year for miner Oz Minerals (ASX:OZL).
“The Mabel Creek Inlier, based on the character and size of the geophysical anomalies shown, has potential to host a world class IOCG accumulation,” Mr Carter said.
“Importantly the anomalies occur at a depth (between 180m and 260m) which is relatively cheap and easier to test and to develop if a discovery is made”.