The Company’s project areas are located in the Belleterre-Angliers Greenstone Belt (BAGB) in the Pontiac Subprovince south of the Abitibi Greenstone Subprovince within the Superior Province of the Canadian Archean Shield and north of the Proterozoic Grenville Front.
Within the BAGB there are a number of nickel-copper-cobalt-PGE* (Ni-Cu-Co-PGE) sulphide occurrences associated with gabbroic intrusive rocks. These include Zeus’s Alotta, Delphi, Patry, Zullo, Lorraine and Blondeau deposits and the Midrim, Lac Croche, LaForce and Lac Kelly deposits. The Lorraine deposit was a producing mine between 1965 and 1968 with 600,000 tonnes of ore averaging 1.07% Cu and 0.45% Ni being processed.
To the east (~20km) of the Company’s project areas the BABG contains the Belleterre Gold Mine which is hosted by the same mafic volcanic and intrusive rocks as occur in the Lorraine Project area. The Belleterre Mine produced 2.18Mt of ore at an average grade of 10.73 g/t Au for a total of 755,000 oz of gold from the No 12 vein between 1936 and 1959¹. Mineralisation comprised visible gold in quartz veins. Historical recoveries at the Belleterre Mill were 96 %.
*PGE – Platinum Group Elements (Pt and Pd).
The Company’s principal target in the BAGB is nickel sulphide mineralisation (Ni-Cu-Co-PGE) associated with Archean differentiated gabbro bodies. Known deposits in the BAGB range in size from ~200,000t to ~1.2Mt. The Company envisages such deposits as satellite mines to a target 2Mt or larger deposit at >3% Ni+Cu. The Company will also target quartz vein hosted gold mineralisation as occurs at the Belleterre Gold Mine.
Following the approval of TTW Shareholders to acquire Zeus Minerals Ltd and its Canadian subsidiary Zeus Olympus Sub Corp (ASX 3 October 2018) the Company commenced a diamond drill programme at the Alotta Prospect. The nine-hole drill programme (801m) comprised two verification plus four extensional and three infill holes to a 2001 drill programme by Aurora Platinum Corporation which had outlined the near surface Alotta Ni-Cu-Co-PGE mineralised lens.
Full details of the drilling programme and core photographs can be viewed in the ASX announcements of 8th, 9th, 11thand 16th October 2018.
The Company was encouraged by the fact that each hole in the nine-hole programme intersected Ni-Cu-PGE ± Co ± Ag mineralisation which included significant high-grade massive sulphide and semi-massive intercepts ± net-textured and disseminated mineralised zones up to 3.04% Ni and 4.81% Cu (ASX 13thNovember 2018). A wireframe model of the Alotta mineralised lens at 0.5% Ni+Cu cut-off extends from surface to 80m depth, has a long axis (strike) of 75m and is up to 20m thick (ASX 8thJanuary 2019). No tonnage has been estimated for the Alotta lens.
A listing of mineralised intercepts for all nine holes drilled is given in Table 1 below. All assay intervals are downhole intersections. A drill hole collar plan and collar coordinate information together with statutory JORC Table 1 information is given under the JORC Web Page.
The Company’s consultants Orix Geoscience who managed all aspects of the drill programme have completed both a sectional and plan view (elevation / level) interpretation of the Alotta deposit (see below). They also produced a wireframe model of the deposit which will be suitable for use in a future resource estimation (ASX 8thJanuary 2019).
The geological legend in the Figure below highlights massive sulphides within the mineralised zone as shown on the sections. A horizontal plan view of the mineralised lens at 55m vertical depth and a long-section are shown below.
2019 Exploration Programme
Knowledge of the Alotta geology and mineralisation acquired from the Company’s first drill programme in Canada will assist it in the evaluation of the known mineralisation in the Alotta-Delphi-Zullo (ADZ) Project area (see Figures below) as well as providing critical information for targeting new /deeper discoveries.
The Company’s Consultants Core Geophysics have merged the Zeus Minerals 2017 aeromagnetic survey data with historic regional aeromagnetic data to produce a regional interpretation so allowing comparison of the of mineralised gabbro bodies (the host rock to Ni-Cu-PGE mineralisation) in the ADZ with those in surrounding area. The geophysical review is work in progress and will be reported at a future date.
The Company will fly a helicopter VTEM survey over the ADZ in conjunction with that planned for the Lorraine Project area. The VTEM data will upgrade the 2001 AeroTEM and 2002 MegaTEM coverage which identified the known deposits and will test for extensions to the known mineralisation as well as new deeper conductors.
The Company will announce a Work Programme in the coming weeks which will be based on the existing geology and drilling results together with the reinterpreted geophysical data. It is anticipated that the VTEM survey will be flown in the current quarter. This will however be subject to contractor availability and suitable weather conditions.
The Company’s consultants Orix Geoscience (Orix) and Core Geophysics have over the last few months been acquiring historic data for the Lorraine Project tenements which comprise 90 Claims covering ~46km2 (see Figures below).
Orix has compiled a historic database of 250 files downloaded from the Ministère de l’Énergie et des Ressources naturelles– MERN (Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources), Quebec, Canada. The reports have been classified under Geology, Geochemistry, Geophysics, Drilling, Resources, Mining and Metallurgy categories. This database included some of the drilling and geophysical data acquired by the Company as part of the Zeus Minerals Ltd acquisition but for the most part the data is new to the Company.
The Lorraine Mine is reported (by MERN*) to have produced 600,000 tonnes of ore at 1.08% Cu and 0.46% Ni plus 14,000ozs Au, 86,000ozs Ag with an unspecified PGE credit (1964 – 68). The mine plans outline remnant ‘ore’ in stopes, the partly stoped 5 Level (~240m VD) and the undeveloped 6 Level (290m VD) and the 6 Level drifts totalling ~450m of development to access the down plunge continuation of the mineralisation east of the shaft (ASX 9thJanuary 2019).
A schematic plan of the Lorraine Mine area showing the open pit, the approximate position of the shaft and sketches of the 1, 3 and 6 Levels scaled from hardcopy plans is shown below. A surface gossan was found by prospectors in 1961 and the discovery holes M1 to M11 are also shown. The balance of the drill holes were completed during production with the LM series holes (01 to 11) being drilled in 2005/06.
Downhole EM (DHEM) surveying of the LM series holes returned strong off-hole conductors (above the holes) in the hanging wall to the Lorraine mineralisation in holes LM-01 and LM-04 (see Figure below). The Company is currently in the process of locating and acquiring the digital data for the entire DHEM survey.
Drill holes LM-03 and LM-08 are located approximately 500m east of the shaft and returned anomalous Au and Cu values in the felsic footwall sequence (see comments below under Gold Mineralisation). Hole LM-03 intersected a gabbro unit at depth (254m downhole) with anomalous Ni and Cu values. Diamond drilling both west and east of the intersection will need to be undertaken.
*Ministère de l’Énergie et des Ressources naturelles– MERN (Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources).
The Lorraine Mine data continues to confirm the gold potential of the footwall felsic volcanic/metasediment sequence as described in the Company’s ASX 10 September 2018, namely:
- Historical channel sampling from the 6th level ‘drift’ at Lorraine Mine returned 28.04m at 37.42 g/t Au and 33.74 g/t Ag;
- A drill intercept from the 6th level returned 1m at 44.12 g/t Au and 102.91 g/t Ag;
- Five copper-gold bearing quartz veins with visible gold with a combined average grade of 29.2g/t Au and 2.75% Cu were sampled in the lower level of the mine (width and extent of veining is not reported);
- High gold values up to 13.8g/t Au from sulphide bearing samples collected from the Lorraine mullock dumps; and,
- Field grab samples up to 28g/t Au attest to the gold prospectivity beyond the immediate mine e.g. the LM-03 area (above Figure)
- The Company has not yet been able to confirm the location of the high-grade gold sampling on the Lorraine Mine 6 Level drifts.
Evaluation of the gold potential of the Lorraine Mine and wider Project area will commence once all of the data has been reviewed. The latter will occur this quarter once the Company management has met with Orix and other associated parties in Toronto.
2019 Exploration Programme
The Company’s Consultants Core Geophysics have merged 2015 aeromagnetic survey data with historic regional aeromagnetic data to produce a regional interpretation so allowing comparison of the of mineralised gabbro bodies (the host rock to Ni-Cu-PGE mineralisation) in the district to those of the Lorraine Project area. The geophysical review is work in progress and will be reported at a future date.
A helicopter VTEM survey will be flown over the Lorraine claims in conjunction with that planned for the ADZ Project area. The VTEM data will upgrade a 2015 airborne VLF EM survey which is considered to be a ‘reconnaissance level shallow penetration’ system. The VTEM survey will test for extensions to the known mineralisation as well as search for new conductors.
The Company will announce a Work Programme shortly which will be based on the evaluation existing geology and drilling reports together with the reinterpreted geophysical data. It is anticipated that the VTEM survey will be flown in March-April. This will however be subject to contractor availability and suitable weather conditions. It is anticipated that diamond drilling targeting both Ni-Cu massive sulphides and gold mineralisation will follow-on from the geophysical work.
In addition to the exploration programme the Company will assess the status of the Lorraine Mine shaft and environs and make enquiries regarding permitting requirements for dewatering and underground drilling.