08/06/2021 - 17:00

Eclipse review serves up shallow NT uranium mineralisation

08/06/2021 - 17:00

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A review of historical drilling at its Ngalia Basin project in the Northern Territory has served up shallow uranium, vanadium and strontium mineralised zones for Eclipse Metals. Intercepts including 0.5m going 960 parts per million uranium and 570 ppm strontium from just 1m depth and a zone stretching over 11km of strike caught the eye. Seven untested radiometric target areas were also delineated.

Uranium channel map highlighting untested radiometric anomalies and potential mineralised zones at Ngalia Basin in the Northern Territory. Credit: File

An extensive review of historical drilling at its Ngalia Basin project in the Northern Territory has served up several shallow uranium, vanadium and strontium mineralised zones for Eclipse Metals. Intercepts including 0.5m going 960 parts per million uranium and 570 ppm strontium from just 1m depth and a zone stretching over 11km of strike caught the eye. Seven untested radiometric target areas were also delineated.

Eclipse has two granted exploration licences and a further eight exploration licence applications in the Ngalia Basin, for a combined 7,550sq.km of tenure in a region known to host uranium mineralisation.

The standout historical drilling results were from a 790sq.km exploration licence under application about 300km north-west of Alice Springs.

Eclipse’s review of data from 149 shallow rotary air blast drill holes for 1,243m of drilling coverage reportedly identified mineralised envelopes of uranium, vanadium and strontium hosted in calcrete horizons between 1m and 3m thick. The drilling was to an average 8.3m depth with a maximum drilling depth of only 16m.

Management said the 11km mineralised zone at the western end of the huge basin tenure had an interpreted width of 800m with the calcrete-hosted mineralisation averaging 2m in thickness. Carnotite, the principal uranium and vanadium mineral, has been visually observed at surface in one hole of the mineralised zone.

In the eastern part of the concession another mineralised zone has been identified with an estimated strike length of 3.9km and 2.5km average width. Calcrete-hosted mineralisation in the eastern zone averages 3m in thickness, with one hole returning a 1m interval going 4.8 per cent strontium from just 2m depth.

Other impressive intercepts from the concession include 1m at 310 ppm uranium and 0.11 per cent strontium from just 1m depth, 1m at 230 ppm uranium and 0.23 per cent strontium from 4m in another hole, with 1.5m at 110 ppm vanadium and 4.14 per cent strontium from 8.5m reported in yet another hole.

The company believes there is strong potential for encountering more uranium, vanadium and strontium mineralisation with deeper drilling of the broad mineralised zones.

Intriguingly, no fewer than seven radiometric target areas also remain to be drill-tested. Further re-interpretation of airborne radiometric data is now on the cards as the company looks to uncover the source of the anomalies.

Management says several untested high-priority drill targets identified at its Ngalia Basin concession exhibit geophysical similarities with other uranium deposits in the district.

The Cappers uranium deposit is just a stone’s throw away to the east of the exploration licence, whilst the Malawiri uranium deposit is 6.6km to the north-east. Both areas are owned by ASX-listed Energy Metals.

Eclipse is now looking to conclude traditional owner agreement negotiations to allow for proposed exploration. Rotary air blast drilling is on the agenda, in addition to infill drilling of the western and central areas.

Uranium prices have bounced off recent lows and could be headed higher on the back of surging worldwide demand for ‘green’ energy. New mine supply is on the radar of international power companies and Australia continues to be seen among the top jurisdictions for long-term, reliable production demanded by utilities.

 

Is your ASX-listed company doing something interesting? Contact: matt.birney@businessnews.com.au

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