10/08/2021 - 16:35

PolarX targets high-grade Alaskan copper system

10/08/2021 - 16:35

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PolarX is making the most of the Alaskan summer and has already put a diamond drill rig on the ground at its high-grade Caribou Dome copper discovery north of Anchorage. The timely move into drilling has been prompted in part by the recent skyward move in the price of the lucrative red metal, which reached all-time highs of US$10,780 per tonne in early May.

An exploration geologist examining outcropping sulphide mineralisation in Alaska. Credit: File

PolarX is making the most of the Alaskan summer and has already put a diamond drill rig on the ground at its Caribou Dome copper discovery north of Anchorage. The timely move into drilling has been prompted in part by a rocketing copper price, which reached all-time highs of US$10,780 per tonne in early May before settling back at US$9,350 per tonne.

The company’s two resources in Alaska, at Caribou Dome and Zackly, both sport high-grade copper values. The Caribou Dome resource weighs in at an eye-catching 2.8 million tonnes grading at an impressive 3.1 per cent copper. PolarX’s current exploration program comprises 1,500 metres of diamond drilling and is designed to test three new massive sulphide targets proximal to the main Caribou deposit.

The copper deposit forms part of PolarX’s mineral-rich project area in the Alaska Range, about 250km north-east of Anchorage in the northernmost American state. The company’s tenure stretches along more than 35 kilometres of strike and contains a wealth of prospects including the Caribou Dome sulphide system in the south through to the Zackly skarn and Mars porphyry copper-gold discoveries in the north.

The Alaska Range lies within a larger mineralised province on the famed “ring of fire” which hosts a number of giant ore deposits which include the 10.9 billion tonne Pebble porphyry copper-gold discovery, the 78.9-million-ounce Donlin gold project and little closer to PolarX’s ground, Northern Star’s 5-million-ounce Pogo gold mine.

With more than $3.4 million in the bank, PolarX now looks to be making the most of the buoyant market conditions and the enviable opportunity presented by its comprehensive ground holdings in the north of mineral rich Alaska. The company’s Caribou discovery was originally made in the 1960s and has a history of sporadic exploration and even boasts underground access to the mineralised system.

PolarX picked up Caribou in 2015 and immediately set about compiling the historical exploration data and undertaking baseline geochemical and geophysical surveys. It published a maiden resource in 2017 with subsequent exploration hinting that the rich mineralised system may be far larger than previously thought.

Caribou Dome currently consists of nine near surface copper-sulphide rich lodes that extend over more than 800m of strike. PolarX has recently completed a detailed evaluation of the deposit and it surrounds, with exploration showing the target stratigraphy can be traced over more than 18km of strike, whilst previous induced polarisation surveys have lit up three targets adjacent to the main resource area.

The 2021 exploration program is designed to test these three new targets which are likely to host one or more sulphide lenses but will also include a series of strategic drill holes across the recognised resource area to provide fresh samples for metallurgical test work.

PolarX’s test work program will provide key data for the company’s developing scoping study. The study has kicked off ahead of schedule and proposes the construction of a central milling operation to process the ores from the Zackly copper-gold deposit, the Caribou Dome deposit and any future discoveries in the region.

With PolarX now drilling at Caribou and extensional drilling over the Zackly deposit scheduled in the weeks ahead, the company’s exploration program in Alaska is gaining momentum.

Add in the recent jump into scoping and PolarX looks likely to begin garnering some attention as work continues to uncover the rich mineral potential of its projects in the US.

 

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

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