INSIDE UPDATE: Cassini Resources (ASX: CZI) continues to progress the company’s West Musgrave nickel-copper project in Western Australia.
Cassini Resources, and its West Musgrave project Joint Venture partner, OZ Minerals are six months into a pre-feasibility study on the project that, according to schedule should be finished in around 12 months from now.
The JV partners have completed activities as part of the West Musgrave PFS where OZ Minerals is looking to proceeding to the next stage of its Farm-in and Joint Venture agreement, which enables OZ Minerals to earn 51 per cent of the project through an investment of approximately $19 million over a maximum of 18 months.
The PFS commenced in November 2017 and has proceeded to plan so far with recent activities including the re-opening and expansion of the exploration camp to accommodate the increased level of activity on site during the study.
Two diamond drill rigs are currently working double shift to produce samples for the next phase of metallurgical optimisation, while advanced test work has already begun on samples remaining from the 2017 program.
Test work will focus on potential nickel and copper recovery improvements identified during the Scoping Study.
Meanwhile, resource infill and extension drilling has recently commenced with two additional RC drill rigs now on-site.
Cassini anticipates the first results of the RC drilling are likely to be available from the beginning of June.
Surface moving loop (MLEM) and downhole electromagnetic (DHEM) surveys have also commenced at exploration targets One Tree Hill, Yappsu and Succoth with a third diamond drill rig arriving in early May to assist with exploration drilling.
Gravity and passive seismic surveys have been completed to assist targeting of water exploration drilling later in 2018 as de-risking of a reliable water supply for processing is a key outcome of the PFS.
With the West Musgrave JV with OZ Minerals ticking along nicely, Cassini has signalled its intentions to conduct exploration activities at its 100 per cent-owned exploration projects, including taking opportunities to add to the project portfolio when they become available.
This determination resulted in the company recently securing an option to acquire the Yarawindah Brook nickel-copper-cobalt project near New Norcia, in Western Australia.
The Yarawindah Brook project has had only limited nickel, copper and cobalt exploration despite sitting in a favourable regional setting, prospective geology and near-surface occurrences of nickel and copper.
Historic exploration focussed on a small platinum and palladium (PGEs) resource which Cassini considers a ‘path-finder’ anomaly for massive nickel – copper – cobalt sulphides.
Exploration for nickel and copper has been sporadic, however the most recent drilling in 2007 targeting surface EM anomalies, returned encouraging results, including 7 metres at 1.3 per cent nickel, 0.22 per cent copper, 0.06 per cent cobalt and 432ppb palladium from 74m.
No further follow-up drilling was conducted due to budget limitations of the previous operator during the exploration downturn post-GFC.
Elsewhere across its portfolio, Cassini is carrying out a high-resolution, helicopter-borne, Airborne Electromagnetic (AEM) survey at the company’s 100 per cent-owned West Arunta project in Western Australia.
Cassini completed a round of drilling at West Arunta in 2016 testing several zinc anomalous outcrops that had been identified through surface mapping and sampling.
From this drilling, Cassini considered there could be a chance the West Arunta has potential to host sedimentary zinc mineralisation, even though the zinc anomalous outcrops were interpreted at the time to be the result of hydromorphic dispersion in the regolith from a nearby primary source.
Cassini engaged independent contractor NRG to fly its trademarked Xcite system over the entire prospective horizon, striking over 35 kilometres, for a total of 1000 line-kilometres.
The survey is expected to assist with mapping the regolith profile and the definition of key prospective stratigraphic positions, as well as potentially directly identifying base metal mineralisation.
The long-term outlook for the zinc price is for it to remain strong due to current supply deficits.
Cassini ranks the West Arunta zinc project as a key exploration asset where it has a ‘first-mover’ advantage, due to minimal historic exploration in the region.
Cassini has taken West Arunta from conceptual model to proof-of-concept over the past few years and hopes to identify primary sedimentary zinc mineralisation at the project.
Cassini Resources Limited (ASX: CZI)
…The Short Story
10 Richardson Street
West Perth WA 6005
Phone: +61 8 6164 8900
Mike Young, Richard Bevan, Dr Jon Hronsky, Phil Warren, Greg Miles