A focused resource developer and explorer plans to bolster its mining operations with investors through the stock exchange.
Perth-based Ardea Resources has big plans for its exotic metals projects in Western Australia’s Kalgoorlie region. The company has been listed on the Australian Securities Exchange and hopes to attract funds for its KNP Cobalt Zone, Lewis Ponds Project and Australian jade exploration activities.
Drilling at KNP is scheduled to commence in March 2017.
“Initially there will be two drill programs that will focus on defining cobalt-rich zones that are presently outside of, but which we hope to include into, the KNP Cobalt Zone,” the company says.
“Around 80 reverse circulation (RC) drillholes are planned at Black Range and Kalpini that, if successful, will substantially expand the resources of the KNP Cobalt Zone. Work has also commenced on a new pre-feasibility study (PFS) focusing on the KNP Cobalt Zone. The program will in part investigate recent metallurgical advances into various atmospheric leaching techniques that will substantially drop the cost of capital expenditure required to build a processing plant. Dedicated drilling will also be required to provide suitable samples. Ardea has appointed an expert metallurgist with extensive experience in lateritic nickel-cobalt deposits to oversee our metallurgical test programs for the PFS.”
Ardea is seeking a suitable partner with knowledge of the downstream jewellery industry to pursue opportunities for the large-scale mining of chrysoprase. The company claims there is growing demand for one of Australia’s signature gemstones, chrysoprase.
Commonly referred to as Australian jade, chrysoprase is a rich green coloured semi-precious gemstone that, like opal, is located within cracks and crevices in weathered near-surface rocks.
“The chrysoprase has developed as part of the nickel laterite regime, so is genetically and spatially related to the nickel and cobalt mineralisation. Profitable chrysoprase mining has been undertaken by small-scale tribute miners on the KNP mining licences for many years. We are presently assessing the viability of an industrial-scale mining operation to meet surging east-Asian demand,” the company says.
The Lewis Pond Project is near Orange, New South Wales and is promised to have real potential for extensive late-stage gold mineralisation.
“Reconsideration of the Lewis Ponds deposit as a bulk tonnage gold, silver, and base metal mining operation is expected to result in broad mineralised intercepts and allow appraisal of the deposit in a manner akin to that used for the development of the successful mines of the region,” the company says.
“Ardea will commence diamond drilling in March at Lewis Ponds. The initial program will comprise four diamond drill holes that will be systematically drilled on separate established section lines spaced at 200 m line intervals. Each of these holes is targeted at existing gaps in the drillhole database that are expected to contain broad mineralised intervals. On successful completion of this initial program, a follow-up program comprising five additional diamond drillholes is expected to follow. The rationale is the same, but with systematic infilling of drilling to 100 m line spacing. In addition to the new drilling, all drillholes on the drilled section lines for which core still exists will be relogged and, where appropriate, reassayed.
“Metallurgical studies will be undertaken on core generated in these first drill programs to characterise the various geometallurgical classifications. Of particular interest will be the broad stringer zones of mineralisation, as well as the later styles of gold(-silver) mineralisation.”
Other work at Lewis Ponds in coming months will include:
- deposit-scale geological mapping
- soil geochemistry at Lewis Ponds and along strike to the north and south
- LIDAR survey to generate an accurate three-dimensional digital elevation model suitable for exploration planning, resource calculations, and mine planning
Ardea has engaged FTI Consulting director Jon Snowball to handle investor and communities enquiries.
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