Centaurus Metals (ASX: CTM) has recovered high-grade cobalt and nickel results from initial exploration activities at its newly-acquired Itapitanga project in Brazil, ahead of a reverse circulation (RC) drilling campaign planned to begin next month.
Centaurus geologists collected channel, rock chip and soil samples as part of the company’s first exploration program over the project area. Assays returned with gradings of up to 0.52% cobalt and 1.63% nickel from rock chip samples and up to 0.19% cobalt from channel samples.
According to the company, these early stage results provided strong indications that the high-grade cobalt mineralisation at Itapitanga was similar to that seen at adjoining large-scale nickel-cobalt projects.
These include Anglo America’s Jacare nickel-copper project, which has a mineral resource of 307 million tonnes at 1.3% nickel and 0.13% cobalt, including a high-grade cobalt resource of 185Mt at 1.2% nickel and 0.18% cobalt.
“Jacare has one of the highest cobalt grades globally for a large-scale nickel-cobalt laterite deposit, and we’re really excited to confirm that we have similar mineralisation on our ground,” Centaurus managing director Darren Gordon said.
“Now it’s about working through the exploration work programs to understand exactly what we’ve got,” he said.
Aggressive exploration is already underway at Itapitanga, including soil sampling and auger drilling to test the widths and grade of the at-surface mineralisation. Centaurus is anticipating the first results in the coming weeks.
The company then planned to mobilise a drill rig to kick off an RC drilling campaign in mid to late March, after the initial auger drilling results are received.
Exploration in Brazil
Centaurus has three key projects located in the Carajas mineral province of Brazil – its flagship Salobo West copper-gold-cobalt project, the Itapitanga cobalt-nickel project, and Pebas, which is prospective for copper and gold.
The company also announced today that it was continuing to plan for its maiden diamond drilling program at Salobo West, which is scheduled to commence after the end of the current wet season (in May or June).
Centaurus also planned to start an initial RC drilling program at its Pebas project after the first round of RC drilling at Itapitanga is completed.
Centaurus shares rose 8.3% on today’s announcement by afternoon trade.