Podium Minerals has delivered a massive 28% increase in its platinum group elements resource at the Parks Reef project in WA.

An update from platinum group metals specialist Podium mineral’s (ASX:POD)  has revealed richer and deeper resources in PGE and copper than previously expected, with a giant 2.8Moz of platinum, palladium and gold resources.

Copper tonnes have also increased by well over 30% to 104,000t.

Podium’s new Inferred resource includes a PGM horizon of 50.6Mt at 0.82g/t platinum, 0.66g/t palladium, 0.08g/t gold, 0.07% copper and 0.1% nickel for 2.54Moz of 3E PGM at 1.56g/t.

Its base metal-gold rich horizon includes 27.8Mt of ore at 0.1g/t Pt, 0.07g/t Pd, 0.13g/t Au, 0.24% Cu and 0.1% Ni, containing 271,000oz of 3E PGM at 0.3g/t.

Impressively, ounces of the high value upper PGM horizon have soared by 34%, including 12.3Mt at 2g/t 3E PGM and 0.17% Cu.

The resource is significantly deeper than the previous resource estimate, which included the full 15km strike length of the project and was defined to a depth of 100m.

That has opened up the potential for underground mining studies to go alongside open pit investigations.

A 2.6km portion of the western part of the resource where Podium has intersected the reef at up to 225m below surface, with Inferred resources now defined down to a low point of 325m.

Long-life project

Podium Minerals CEO Sam Rodda said the exciting result reflects the strength and vision of its management team and the outstanding work they’ve done with contract partners to deliver the growth in the resource.

“This is an exciting result for Podium and our Parks Reef Project, reinforcing the strengths of our new management team who have performed well together with contract partners to deliver a 28% increase in 3E PGM ounces as Podium looks to significantly grow our resource at depth and along strike,” he said.

“As we continue to understand and grow our geological knowledge of the orebody, activities will be focused on increasing resources, infill drilling and study work, with further metallurgical testing to inform a scoping study.

“These actions underpin and are key to accelerating our strategy to prove and develop a high-value, long-life Australian PGM asset.”

It certainly is a great time to be adding ounces in PGM metals and tonnes in copper.

They’ll be highly sought after in the transition to green energy given their value in reducing pollution in cars and in the future in hydrogen electrolysers.

Palladium prices

Palladium prices in particular have surged on fears of a supply issue out of Russia, the world’s largest producer, while copper is trading near record highs on surging green demand.

Podium will also be reviewing archived pulp samples to test for PGM elements including rhodium and iridium.

While they would likely be a smaller portion of the Parks Reef resource – drill holes tested to date have shown elevated concentrations within the lower PGM horizon of 4-5% of the 3E PGM grades – if successful the super high value elements could add over 25% to the value of Podium’s MRE basket price.

Rhodium is worth US$16,925/oz while iridium currently fetches about US$3900/oz.

Major drilling program on the way

Podium is not ready to sit still.

Core Drilling Services is due to start a 20,000m reverse circulation drilling program at Parks Reef next week, including stage 9 and 10 activities.

Where are those stages at, you ask?

Stage nine will include about 30 short holes to complete the drill data set in the existing inferred resource to 100m.

This includes near surface supergene enriched mineralisation that has never been tested, including drilling across an 800m section that is subject to a cultural heritage clearance in progress.

The stage 10 program will involve the drilling of 50 holes on 200m spacing across the central and eastern sectors of the orebody for 10,000m of RC.

It will test the reef to 170m deep, including 12km not drilled yet at depth to inform the extent and confidence of the Parks Reef resource.

New head rock kicker to drive exploration success

To lead these programs Mark Fleming has been brought on board as Podium’s head of geology, a member of the AusIMM and fellow of the Australian Institute of Geoscientists who has 30 years in the game hunting precious and base metals across Australia, Africa and Europe.

He will oversee drilling programs across 2022 focusing on resources at depth and infill drilling to support a scoping study, along with technical drilling for met testing and mining inputs.

Podium is also awaiting results from two co-funded deep holes drilled in collaboration with the WA Government’s Exploration Incentive Scheme, expected early in the June quarter.

They are testing the reef grade continuity and thickness of Parks Reef at about 520m twice the depth of previous drilling. Core from the two holes have arrived in Perth, PRDD003 and PRDD004.

The scope of the program is highlighted by the fact they were drilled some 10km apart.

A third deep hole has also been completed outside of the $150,000 EIS grant.




This article was developed in collaboration with Podium Minerals, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing.


This article does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.