Successful gold explorer Saturn enters the Lachlan Fold
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Special Report: Targeted exploration by Saturn Metals has uncovered a potentially massive gold system at the flagship ~780,000/oz Apollo Hill project in WA. It’s now adding another winner to its portfolio — a historic, high-grade gold project in the well-endowed Lachlan Fold Belt of NSW.
Popular explorer Saturn Metals (ASX:STN) has joint ventured into a 91sqkm ‘brownfields’ (previously mined or explored) tenement at the historic West Wyalong goldfield; part of the increasingly popular Lachlan Fold Belt in NSW.
West Wyalong, which operated mainly between 1894 and 1915, produced about 439,000oz of gold grading 36 grams per tonne (g/t).
Peak production was in 1899 when 44,534oz of gold was recovered at an exceptional grade of 90g/t. In today’s terms, a deposit 5g/t or above is generally considered high grade.
But there’s plenty of exploration upside at this tier 1 location, Saturn says. The deepest of the historic underground mines is shallow by current standards (411m) and the field has been subject to minimal modern exploration.
The majority of the lodes in the field have not been worked greater than 50m depth.
The gold-rich Mallee Bull Reef, which has been mapped over a 2km strike length, will be Saturn’s initial focus.
The company is planning a “targeted and succinct” diamond drill hole campaign to test ‘down plunge’ of the interpreted highly mineralised gold shoots across the Mallee Bull system’s strike length.
Saturn can earn up to 85 per cent in the project by spending $1.9m on exploration over four years, and by making $195,000 in staged progress payments in cash and shares.
The underexplored West Wyalong gold project will complement the flagship Apollo Hill, managing director Ian Bamborough says.
“The initial target [at Mallee Bull Reef] itself is classic, very high-grade quartz reefs,” he says.
“From what we can see, looking back through the old records, there’s been very little effective exploration here since mining finished in the 1920s.
“We are delighted with the latest round of results this year from Apollo Hill, where we started to turn out some really high-grade zones,” Bamborough says.
“That drill program is imminent. Things only really stopped due to COVID-19 but we should be, fingers crossed, drilling by the end of the week.”