A 100km-long zone is the copper target as DGO Gold (ASX: DGO) begins drilling on prime South Australian ground owned by Investigator Resources (ASX: IVR) as the first stage to earning an 80% stake in the project.
The project, Pernatty, lies 55km southwest of the Carrapateena copper-gold mine operated by OZ Minerals (ASX: OZL).
DGO will sink 46 holes for a total 5,000m of reverse circulation drilling to test Zambian Copper Belt (ZCB) type sediment hosting copper.
DGO’s agreement with silver play Investigator allows for the farm-in company to spend $6.36 million over five years to earn the 80%.
Investigator is focusing on its Paris deposit in South Australia which it says is the largest undeveloped silver project in Australia.
Copper zone could be at shallow depth
DGO’s consultant, Dr Stuart Bull, who the company describes as an expert in ZCB deposits, has identified a 100km-plus long transition zone between shallow water carbonates and reduced basin shales, which overlie a basement high of oxidised sandstone.
“Based on historic drill intersections, the depth to the transition zone may be less than 100m,” DGO said.
“The basin setting at Pernatty has many similarities with the edges of the Katangan Basin in the Central African Copperbelt which hosts such deposits as Chambishi.”
The Chambishi deposit contains 40 million tonnes at 2.6% copper and is also the location of a copper smelter.
DGO says copper has been identified in historic drill holes east of its tenements.
The former British-owned minerals house Selection Trust intersected 1.9m at 1.7% copper from 185m down hole when exploring for sedimentary copper immediately east of Pernatty in 1976.
Earlier copper hit not followed up
DGO says this result was not adequately followed up before the tenement was relinquished in 1978.
“Past exploration results highlight the potential for significant mineralisation within the interpreted transition zone,” the company noted.
This program is DGO’s first at Pernatty and is the culmination of three years of work developing and defining targets.
The Pernatty tenements are located in the Eastern Gawler Craton, South Australia, within the Stuart Shelf Copper-Gold Province.
Fifteen licences covering 4,610sq km form DGO’s Pernatty position 120km northwest of Port Augusta.
Ten are 100% held by DGO and five are under a binding heads of agreement with Investigator.
Deposits on the Stuart Shelf include the stratiform copper-cobalt deposits at Myall Creek, Mt Gunson and Emmie Bluff, BHP’s (ASX: BHP) Olympic Dam copper-gold-uranium mine, and a number of other copper-gold deposits including Oz Minerals’ Prominent Hill and Carrapateena deposits.