Wiluna’s outstanding gold hit is proof this giant is wide awake
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Wiluna Mining’s (ASX:WMX) recent drilling has clearly highlighted that its namesake project is a very large and high-grade gold system with exceptional hits such as 37.52m at 10.77 grams per tonne (g/t) gold.
And while that is certainly the best result in the latest batch of drilling results, it is certainly not alone with intercepts such as 12m at 8.14 grams per tonne (g/t) gold and 5.76m at 5.26g/t gold providing further support.
Executive chairman Milan Jerkovic says the exceptional high-grade gold hits are noteworthy as they will underpin the company’s update ore reserves estimate that is due to be published in January 2021.
“The company is targeting high-grade zones, because every 1g/t increase in the grade should result in an additional 25,000oz per annum of production in Stage 1 and 50,000oz per annum in Stage 2,” he added.
“Indeed, the continued focus of our aggressive drilling campaign is to deliver rapid growth in high-grade resources and reserves through infill drilling of the existing large gold resource, and to discover new zones ‘under the headframe’.
“Very encouragingly, drilling continues to confirm that Wiluna is a very large, very high-grade gold system.”
The outstanding 37.52m at 10.77g/t hit was returned from infill drilling designed at upgrading the resource at the Bulletin zone to the higher confidence indicated level, which means there is sufficient information on geology and grade continuity to support mine planning.
Wiluna noted that excellent results have been achieved to date with the lodes remaining open in multiple directions, which provides the potential for further growth.
Previous drilling had also returned wide, high-grade gold intersections such as 14.45m at 17.16g/t, 7.4m at 15.82g/t and 19.56m at 6.15g/t that demonstrate that very high-tenor mineralisation remains in situ at Bulletin, at shallow depths close to existing mine development to allow for rapid and low-cost extraction.
Meanwhile, recent drilling at the Essex and Calvert zones have returned further high-grade gold hits such as 3.89m at 8.67g/t and 5m at 9.44g/t.
These results complement previous high-grade results and confirm that possible extensions to the lodes remain open along strike and down-plunge.
Wiluna already packs a significant resource of 143Mt at 1.6g/t for 7.3 million oz of contained gold.
Under the first stage of its sulphide development plant, the company will transition from its current production of about 62,000oz per annum (ozpa) of gold from mining free milling ore through the current 2.1 million tonne per annum carbon-in-leach processing facility to initially producing about 120,000ozpa of gold and gold in concentrate.
This will be implemented using the current, recently refurbished crushing circuit, the previously expanded mill circuit and a new 750ktpa concentrator by October 2021.
Wiluna will then increase production to about 250,000ozpa by at least doubling the mining rate and concentrator by the end of 2023 or early 2024 in the second stage.
The company recently reported that production for the September quarter rose 18 per cent over the previous quarter to 13,360z of gold while all-in sustaining costs (AISC) dove 38 per cent to a more comfortable $2012/oz.
AISC is expected to continue dropping in the current quarter as operations continued to improve.
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