Special Report: The first line of drilling at White Cliff Minerals’ wholly owned Coglia Well project, near Glencore’s operational Murrin Murrin nickel and cobalt mine in Western Australia, has delivered thick, near-surface cobalt.

Significant cobalt-nickel mineralisation has been identified in four consecutive holes extending across a width of 400 metres.

Drilling has identified shallow and wide intervals of cobalt and nickel mineralisation with hits of 20m at 0.1 per cent cobalt and 0.7 per cent nickel from 32m, including 11m at 0.13 per cent cobalt and 0.63 per cent nickel from 41m.

White Cliff (ASX:WCN) has completed 2,869m of air core drilling at Coglia Well, with the aim of verifying historical drill results and testing the scale and extents of cobalt and nickel mineralisation.

A series of drill programs undertaken between 2001 and 2003 outlined cobalt and nickel mineralisation over a zone of about 2.5km long by 500m wide and 10 to 15m thick.

Mineralisation is open along strike in both directions and the most recent drilling done by White Cliff has extended the mineralisation to around 4km.

Managing director Todd Hibberd said the initial assay (test) results from Coglia Well confirm the high grade of the cobalt mineralisation on the first section line.

“We expect further assay results in the coming weeks to confirm the grade and scale of the cobalt and nickel mineralisation identified in previous drilling,” he said.

The cobalt grade appears to increase substantially to the south of the main mineralisation, which is consistent with the grade of Glencore’s adjacent Irwin Hills cobalt and nickel deposits that host 29 million tonnes at 0.11 per cent cobalt and 1 per cent nickel.

White Cliff Minerals, ultramafic, nickel laterite, cobalt, Ghan Well
Ghan Well regional drill plan.

A single hole drilled 2.5km south of the main mineralisation encountered 28m at 0.12 per cent cobalt and 0.55 per cent nickel.

There is a further 7km of untested prospective ground to the tenement boundary adjacent to Glencore’s deposit.

Economic potential

White Cliff believes the cobalt mineralisation has the potential to be economically extractable in its own right.

The company’s Ghan prospect is right on the doorstep of Swiss heavyweight Glencore’s operating Murrin Murrin nickel-cobalt mine and processing facility. The Coronation Dam and Coglia Well prospects are also in the same neighbourhood.

The proximity of the Coglia Well project to the Murrin Murrin plant is likely to strongly impact the possibility of economic development of both the cobalt and nickel mineralisation.

Once White Cliff has confirmed the grade and scale of the cobalt and nickel mineralisation, it plans to begin metallurgical test work to evaluate processing methods and economics.

Reverse circulation drilling will soon begin at the Coronation Dam cobalt and nickel project to evaluate the zones of high-grade cobalt mineralisation identified in previous drilling

White Cliff is aiming for a resource by the end of the year.


This special report is brought to you by White Cliff Minerals.

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