THE DRILL SERGEANT: Pioneer Resources (ASX: PIO) declared it has completed sufficient exploration to estimate an initial Inferred Mineral Resource for the Cade spodumene deposit within the company’s 100 per cent-owned Pioneer Dome project in Western Australia.
Pioneer Resources said it has also carried out enough work to estimate an Exploration Target for the project’s greater Dome North Area.
The company explained the estimation of a maiden 2012 JORC-compliant Mineral Resource for the project utilised all the recent drilling the company has completed and was carried out by an independent resource consultancy, resulting in an Inferred Mineral Resource of:
8.2 million tonnes at 1.23 per cent lithium oxide (Li2O) for 102,000 tonnes of contained Li2O.
The Resource contains a low tantalum grade at 50ppm in the samples assayed to date, however, the company is confident metallurgical testwork will ultimately determine any potential economic value to be gleaned from the tantalum as a possible by-product.
“The first Mineral Resource statement for the Cade deposit, discovered as an outcrop just a few months ago in June, is a significant step-forward,” Pioneer Resources managing director David Crook said in the company’s announcement to the Australian Securities Exchange.
“This Resource Statement relates to only one of four mineralised pegmatites identified at the Dome North Area to date, and we look forward to presenting updates to the Mineral Resource base as our exploration and definition drilling continues.”
Pioneer has not commenced metallurgical test work yet, however six diamond core holes have recently been drilled into the Cade Deposit specifically to provide samples for this work.
The Cade Deposit is one of four spodumene-bearing pegmatites discovered by Pioneer’s geological team in the Pioneer Dome North Area.
Other occurrences include:
The Heller prospect (previously Spodumene Target 1) where down-hole pegmatite intersections of between 8m and 15m have been intersected over a strike length of 460m by 10 holes to date. Spodumene has been observed in all holes by Pioneer’s geologists, where fresh pegmatite has been intersected. The mineralisation remains ‘down plunge’;
Spodumene Target 3, which has been tested by two holes to date that intersected a pegmatite 26m to 28m thick. Pioneer’s geologists have visually identified spodumene crystals in pegmatite in this drill hole; and
A new 20m thick pegmatite target located 400m south of the Cade deposit, tested to date by three holes.
The company has also identified several other geochemical targets.
The company has a conceptual Exploration Target for the Dome North Area of between 17 to 27 million tonnes of spodumene-bearing pegmatite at a grade between 1 and 1.4 per cent Li2O, in addition to the Cade deposit.