Neometals ups nickel resource by 60%
Neometals has lifted the nickel resource at its Armstrong deposit 90km south of Kalgoorlie, by an impressive 60% following a substantial RC drilling program that was designed to infill the old resource and test the extents of interpreted high-grade nickel shoots. Armstrong forms part of the Mt Edwards project where an expanding resource base, across 11 deposits, is bolstering the company’s position as an aspiring nickel developer.
The Armstrong deposit now contains 633,000 tonnes grading a very respectable 2.1% nickel for 13,200 nickel tonnes that were defined at a sensible 1% nickel cut-off grade.
The nickel price is currently hovering at around A$18,500 a tonne.
Armstrong also holds additional potentially payable metals, with the 633,000 tonnes containing 12.3% iron, 1,680 parts per million copper, 26.6% magnesium, 453ppm arsenic and 282ppm cobalt.
Neometals said the geological robustness of the deposit holds at cut off grades of up to 2%, which reinforces the technical work and drilling that the company has investing into Mt Edwards.
Importantly, Neometals said it is confident that it now has a better handle on the “channel” geometry of the deposit, which strengthens the resource interpretation and possibility of finding extensions to the mineralisation.
Nickel sulphide deposits are generally interpreted to have formed in channels, cut by ultramafic lava that flowed across the original ground surface, or underlying basalts.
If the prevailing geological conditions were right, nickel sulphide minerals could have precipitated and ponded at the base of these channels.
Armstrong is a massive sulphide nickel deposit that sits on a classical ultramafic - basalt geological contact. Neometals said the deposit starts from just 40m below surface and is currently defined to 300m.
Notably, Neometals has also taken a conservative geological path, ensuring that the mineral resource only encompasses fresh rock and therefore, the grade of the deposit reflects primary nickel sulphide material and not weathered or oxidised nickel.
The company engaged the services of external experts to undertake its resource update with Auralia Mining Consultants taking care of the resource estimate and Snowden Mining Industry Consultants undertaking a third party review.
Recent RC drilling conducted by Neometals was the first of any at the project since 2007 and the company hit some significant massive sulphides with a 6m zone grading 8.11% nickel, including 5m grading 9.63% nickel from 206m down hole.
Other intercepts in the disseminated nickel zone included 34m at 1.94% nickel from 185m and another 24m intersection grading 1.13% nickel from 237m down hole.
Neometals now says that it will drive the project forwards with diamond drilling and further RC at Armstrong to understand the metallurgical intricacies of the deposit. More drilling may also facilitate a boost in confidence of the contained metal in the ground, providing a rock-solid base from which to launch advanced mining studies.
The multi-metals explorer, developer and former lithium innovator has now built up a total resource at the greater Mt Edwards project that encompasses Armstrong of 135,500 nickel tonnes grading 1.7% and it has a swathe of ground across the prolific region to explore.
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