THE DRILL SERGEANT: Pacific Bauxite (ASX: PBX) has completed its first phase of exploration at the company’s South West New Georgia bauxite project (SWNG) in the Western province of the Solomon Islands.
Pacific Bauxite carried out a reconnaissance sampling program including 185 hand-auger drill holes and 26 shallow test-pits at the project, which it said delivered exceptional initial results with extensive areas of bauxitic soils identified throughout the project area.
Using a hand-held XRF, Pacific Bauxite achieved results for 164 samples, with 82 of these returning results of more than 40 per cent alumina (Al2O3).
Three high grade areas have been defined to date, with all returning results around 50 per cent Al2O3 (12 samples in total greater than 50 per cent.
“The company believes SWNG is prospective for large tonnage direct shipping ore (DSO) bauxite mineralisation, and is analogous with the bauxite deposits of the Nendo and Rennell Islands, both within the Solomon Islands,” Pacific Bauxite said in its ASX annuncement.
“This style of mineralisation provides the opportunity for quick, cost-effective resource definition and a simple, low cost, dig-load-ship style minin operation.”
Pacific Bauxite indicated the sampling it has completed to date shows the mineralisation at SWNG contains slightly higher silicon dioxide (SiO2) content than the company’s other Solomon Islands bauxite project, the Nendo project.
However, with results as low as 5.5 per cent total SiO2 and almost one third of the samples below 16 per cent total SiO2, the company considers there to be potential to delineate tonnages of DSO quality, high value material with lower silica content.
“The critical ‘reactive silica’ content is expected to be substantially less than the total SiO2 content measured by the hand held XRF,” the company elucidated.
“The ‘reactive silica’ and ‘available alumina’ analysis for these samples cannot be tested with the handheld XRF tool, as such these samples will also be sent to a certified Australian laboratory for analysis.”