Galena Mining is racing towards a prefeasibility study on a high-grade-underground development of the giant Abra lead-silver deposit after completing a maiden drill program with high-grade hits encountered in every hole. Final assays released today completed a perfect run for Galena and have cleared the way for a maiden estimate of a high-grade resource within weeks.
Final assays from a drill program by Galena Mining targeting a potentially lucrative core of the giant Abra lead-silver deposit have delivered a 100% success rate, with a number of serious looking high-grade intercepts discovered in every hole.
The aspiring base metals producer told the ASX that assays from each of the final four holes at Abra, located in WA’s Gascoyne region, had returned high-grade intercepts, making it a remarkable 12 out of 12 for the maiden drill program.
The latest results included 21.7 metres at 12.0% lead and 21 parts per million silver, 30.0 metres at 10.9% lead and 9 ppm silver and 29.8 metres at 8.2% lead and 12 ppm silver.
This follows last month’s report of an exciting 31.7 metre intersection grading and impressive 13.5% lead and 27 ppm silver, within a broader 53.3 metre interval at 10.9% lead and 20 ppm silver.
The 100% success rate from Galena’s maiden drill program is the best possible vindication of the company’s bold bet on a new approach to Abra, which was discovered in the 1980s and is one of the world’s largest undeveloped lead-silver deposits.
Previous explorers, mesmerised by the sheer size of the deposit, pursued a low-grade, huge tonnage development, but the economics never quite stacked up.
Galena, which only listed on the ASX last September looks to have cracked the geological code at Abra by reducing it from a huge tonnage low grade project to a large tonnage high grade play.
Management are focusing on the potential for an underground development of the high-grade zones that were unearthed courtesy of 38,000 metres of historic drilling but had not been previously targeted.
The company is also benefiting from surging lead prices, which have climbed by 60% over the past two years to reach their highest levels since 2011.
Galena CEO Ed Turner, said: “We are extremely pleased with these final results. To have significant, high-grade mineralisation in every hole of a +8,000 metre program illustrates the potential of Abra. We are proud of the team and the results which have been returned with this program. The drill targeting was based on a high-grade geological interpretation which required detailed re-logging of a large portion of the historical drill core library. Results have validated this interpretation. We now look forward to releasing a new high grade JORC resource estimate in the coming weeks and the results of a Pre-Feasibility Study for which we are fully funded. This study will be completed in Q3 2018.”
The exceptional drill results have cleared the way for a new estimate of the high-grade mineral resource at Abra, which Galena plans to release within weeks. This will be followed immediately by the commencement of a pre-feasibility study that could be wrapped up as soon as September.
Investors are voting with their cheque books too, with Galena’s share price almost doubling since the start of January to $1.21 at the end of last week. Leading Perth broker Hartleys believes there could be more upside yet, initiating coverage last month with a 12-month price target of $1.58.