Good Fortune Keeps Rolling on in for Chalice

In a surprise on Thursday, Chalice Mining revealed it had outlined what seems to be a “significant” new area of interest close to the next target at its rich Julimar copper, nickel, PGE prospect northeast of Perth.

It could be an extension of existing mineralisation (Chalice doesn’t think so), it could be a new area (perhaps) and it could be an example of that rate thing in exploration – putting a hole down and not expecting anything, only to be pleasantly surprised by what’s in the drill core. in other words, a ‘blind prospecting’ or ‘blind drilling’.

From the commentary in the report to the ASX it appears the company was not looking for any mineralisation – the new area of interest is outside existing zones found at Gonneville or identified for follow up work, such as the Hartog electromagnetic anomaly a short distance to the northeast of Gonneville.

News of what Chalice headlined in its announcement as a ’New mineralised intrusion discovered at Julimar” came a day before the company’s shareholders are due to vote at an EGM to spin off its gold holdings into a company called Falcon Metals.

Thursday’s announcement was also 10 days after the company revealed to shareholders at its AGM its plans for the rest of 20201 and the first half of 2022 at its Gonneville find at Julimar, and four other areas of interest named Hartog, Baudin, Janz and Torres as well as other areas to the north and southwest of Gonneville.

Chalice said in its ASX filing that it had found a “zone of shallow high-grade mineralisation intersected directly south of the ~6.5km long Hartog airborne EM anomaly, outside of the Gonneville Intrusion.”

The company said the discovery was of a “newly identified ultramafic intrusive unit” 70 metres to the west of the Gonneville mineralised area.

The new zone has no EM response but is located immediately south of the ~6.5km long Hartog Airborne EM (AEM or Airborne Electromagnetic) anomaly – further upgrading the prospectivity of that target and again highlighting the potential for further ‘blind’ discoveries.

“(The) New zone already visually identified in holes drilled down-dip and along strike to the south (assays pending),” Chalice said in its statement.

Two holes drilled which discovered the new area produced moderate readings: 3 metres from 68 metres depth at 2 grams a tonne of palladium, 03 grams a tonne of platinum, 0.6% nickel, 0.5% copper and 0.05% cobalt. That gives a nickel equivalent reading of 1.7% from 68 metres.

The second hole produced two metres of 1.8% grams to the tonne of palladium, 0.2% platinum, 0.6% nickel, 0.5% copper and 0.06% cobalt for a nickel equivalent reading of 1.9% from 139.2 metres.

On top of this, step out drilling to test the mineralisation outside the known area at Gonneville has found more nickel, copper, PGE and cobalt and extended the existing high-grade areas.

Some of the holes encountered mineralisation well under 500 metres, others shallower. The best nickel equivalents were 3% in a hole from 523 metres, 2.7% nickel equivalent from 582 metres and 2.2% nickel equivalent from 157 metres.

Chalice said in the report that “Step-out out drilling at the north-western limit of the Gonneville deposit has intersected a new shallow zone of high-grade sulphide mineralisation.”

“The mineralisation occurs within a newly identified narrow ultramafic unit located approximately 70m above the hanging wall contact between the Gonneville Intrusion and the surrounding meta-sediments.

“This discovery is considered significant because the new zone is located immediately south of the ~6.5km long Hartog AEM anomaly (within the Julimar State Forest).

“In addition, it confirms that there are other mineralised intrusions in the area that have no EM response. As such, it is interpreted that the Hartog AEM anomaly may stem from the northern extension of this mineralised zone, which in turn may represent the very southern extent of an entirely new intrusion (Hartog).”

Chalice CEO Alex Dorsch, said: “Extensional drilling in an area previously considered to consist only of metasediments has intersected a tantalising new shallow zone of sulphide mineralisation, which is interpreted to be the potential southern extent of a new Hartog zone. The moderate nickel, copper and cobalt grades observed are considered particularly encouraging.

“We believe that the new ultramafic unit intersected is very unlikely to be Gonneville, given that it is separated by ~70m of metasediments and appears to be highly deformed and geochemically different. The new discovery has once again upgraded the prospectivity of the >6.5km long Hartog target immediately north of the new intersections.

“After lengthy consultation with the WA State Government, we believe our low-impact approach to initial drilling in the State Forest is close to being approved. We have received positive feedback on our approach to minimising disturbance and we are eagerly awaiting final approvals for drilling to commence at this exciting new frontier.”

Chalice said the newly identified narrow ultramafic unit is “currently interpreted to be a separate intrusion which overlies the Gonneville Intrusion in sequence. However, the ultramafic unit intersected to date is relatively thin and strongly sheared and therefore a definitive conclusion is not yet possible. Mineralisation is not associated with significant zones of deformation / shearing within Gonneville.

“The new discovery further increases the prospectivity of the Hartog target within the Julimar State Forest immediately north. Further step-out drilling is continuing targeting the new zone on private farmland,” the company said on Thursday.

Investors liked the news, sending Chalice shares up by more than 4% yesterday to close at $9.76.


About Glenn Dyer

Glenn Dyer has been a finance journalist and TV producer for more than 40 years. He has worked at Maxwell Newton Publications, Queensland Newspapers, AAP, The Australian Financial Review, The Nine Network and Crikey.

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