Northern Star Resources says deep drilling hits at its Paulsens gold mine in the Pilbara have the potential to be a "game changer" for the project, with results showing significant potential to extend the resources, reserves and mine life.
The Perth-based company announced today intersections of up to 63.5 grams per tonne of gold in the known limits of the ore body at Paulsens, highlighting the strong potential to greatly increase the life of the mine.
The results were the first in a deep drilling campaign aimed to extend the project's mine life to between seven and ten years.
Managing director Bill Beament said the potential returns for the company from the deep drilling program were substantial.
"These initial results point to the Paulsens orebody continuing for about 150m down plunge of the existing known parameters," Mr Beament said.
"The second parent hole is stepped-out about another 200m down plunge and plans are under way for a third and fourth.
"This is an aggressive strategy with significant upside for Northern Star due to the opportunity to add vast amounts of gold and therefore longer mine life which may result."
The drilling results today cap a bumper six months for Northern Star, which remains on the lookout for a major corporate or project acquisition, after taking a significant stake in copper-zinc miner Venturex Resources last month.
Earlier this year, the miner's ambitions to establish a second 100,000 ounce-a-year gold mine at Ashburton, near Tom Price were boosted by a 50 per cent increase in resources.
The miner booked a 250 per cent spike in half-year profit in February, raking in $18 million before tax in the six months to December 31.
The company's share price has rocketed the past two years, rising from 5 cents in September 2010 to trade at 86.5 cents at 12:30PM WST today.