28/06/2021 - 17:42

Podium picks contractor for deep platinum drilling in central WA

28/06/2021 - 17:42

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ASX-listed WA precious and base metals explorer Podium Minerals says it has engaged a drilling contractor to complete three deep diamond holes to test for continuity of extensive near-surface platinum group metals and copper mineralisation at its Parks Reef project south-west of Meekatharra. The three holes targeting reef mineralisation about 500m below surface will be co-funded under the WA Government’s Exploration Incentive Scheme.

Podium Minerals drilling at Parks Reef in central Western Australia. Image: File

ASX-listed WA precious and base metals explorer Podium Minerals says it has engaged a drilling contractor to complete three deep diamond holes to test for continuity of extensive near-surface platinum group metals and copper mineralisation at its Parks Reef project south-west of Meekatharra. The three holes targeting reef mineralisation about 500m below surface will be co-funded under the WA Government’s Exploration Incentive Scheme, or “EIS”.

Podium has enjoyed a stellar run on the market this year on the back of its platinum group metals or “PGM” exploration success at Parks Reef over the past two years. An industry-wide slowdown in assay laboratory turnaround times however has resulted in its highly anticipated resource upgrade being delayed.

The company says the planned upgrade to its existing inferred mineral resource of 1.39 million ounces of combined platinum, palladium plus gold is now expected to hit the market towards the end of July or early August. The current resource estimate that stretches across just 8.5km of the 15km of defined Parks Reef strike that has been modelled to 100m depth, also has base metal credits and boasts nearly 54,000 tonnes of copper.

Podium wants to include 9,000m of new drilling results in its revised resource estimate and management says stage 7 of the RC drilling campaign is underway. About 4,000m of drilling is planned at 200m-spaced sections and to 200m vertical depth across the current Parks Reef strike extent.

The company said four holes have also been drilled to test the continuity of previously announced high-grade 5E platinum group metals, or “PGM” mineralisation in the central east sector at Parks Reef, where previous resource drilling intersected high-grade platinum and palladium up to 25.7g/t 3 element PGMs.

Assays are awaited for the four new holes.

Podium says the 15km-long reef of PGM, gold and base metal mineralisation at its cornerstone project presents near surface with an average true width of about 15m and dips steeply “such that it lies near vertical”. The deepest drilling to date hit the reef at about 250m vertical depth “with the mineralisation remaining open at depth”, according to the company.

Podium has its sights on both open-pittable high-grade and bulk-tonnage PGM-gold-base metals and future access to high-grade zones of PGM mineralisation at deeper levels at Parks Reef.

The company said: “The near vertical orientation of the reef provides favourable geometry for both open pit and underground mining.”

Its planned three 750m-deep diamond holes, co-funded to a maximum of $150,000 by the WA Government under its EIS, are designed to test for continuity of the reef at depth and for parallel PGM-bearing chromitites in hanging wall mafic stratigraphy.

Podium said the deep drilling was expected to commence before the end of July.

The company had more than A$6 million in the bank at the end of March this year and continues to explore aggressively in pursuit of its goals to build a significant mineable resource at Parks Reef and ultimately become Australia’s first platinum group metal producer.

And with the price of palladium on a tear lately, Podium’s timing looks to be exquisite.

 

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

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