New drilling results reported by Caravel Minerals (ASX: CVV) from its Bindi copper deposit in Western Australia are consistent with geological modelling and have “significantly” extended the copper body down dip, the company has reported.
Caravel also noted drilling at Bindi, one of the deposits within the Caravel project area, was previously limited to a depth of around 300m, meaning the company’s conceptual pit modelling was limited by the extent of the resource model.
However, among the new results is one 50m mineralised section that was intercepted 492m down hole.
“The new results provide confidence that the resource can be extended at depth and therefore are expected to support significantly deeper open pit models,” the company said.
Caravel added that previous mining studies of the Bindi deposit have demonstrated deeper open pits may be economic at higher copper prices.
The copper price retreated again overnight, but it is still holding above US$9,000 per tonne (A$11,620/t) and the expected deficits in coming years still overhang the red metal’s story.
Multiple copper zones in drill results
The latest drilling results include one hole with three separate mineralised zones: 26m at 0.31% copper (from 108m down hole), 120m at 0.32% (350m down hole) and 50m at 0.33%, which began at 492m.
Three of the holes reported have two separate zones, with Hole 23 returning 42m at 0.23% and 10m at 0.36% copper.
Wide sections were also encountered in Hole 26, returning 66m at 0.27% copper and 30m at 0.28%.
Caravel Minerals’ project is located 120km north-northeast of Perth in WA’s Wheatbelt region between the towns of Calingiri and Wongan Hills.
The project area is located on cleared agricultural freehold land and is well connected to existing infrastructure including interconnected power, roads and highways, regional service towns and a range of export ports.
Caravel’s copper deposits form part of a regional porphyry style copper-molybdenum-gold mineralised belt discovered in a previously unexplored part of the Yilgarn Craton.
The Caravel copper project comprises a series of deposits of copper with associated gold and molybdenum.
The company’s deposits are much older than most porphyry coppers and have been dated at around 3 billion years old.
The pre-feasibility study (PFS) is due to be completed by the end of this year.
Longer mine life now on the cards
The company said while some intersections at Bindi are deep, “they are potentially situated within economic pit levels”.
Caravel Minerals managing director Steve Abbott said the latest results continue to increase the company’s confidence in the resource model and confirm resources are likely to grow significantly.
“As we look toward completion of the PFS studies later this year, we can expect to see greater overall production estimates of copper and probably [a] longer mine life than indicated in the scoping study completed in May 2019,” he added.
The current resource at Caravel stands at 662 million tonnes at 0.28% copper, for a contained 1.86 Mt.