Jervois Mining (ASX: JRV) has revealed positive drilling results from the aggressive exploration campaign underway at its Idaho cobalt operations in the US, with drilling unearthing up to 2.83% cobalt in the main resource.
Since acquiring the asset in July, Jervois has been undertaking an “aggressive” drilling program to de-risk and optimise the bankable feasibility study and assess potential for a resource upgrade.
Jervois has completed 19-holes for 3,125m of diamond core drilling across the modelled Ram resource, with all holes intersecting mineralisation – representing a 20% increase in all resource grade holes at the deposit.
Additionally, two holes were undertaken to extend the resource and were successful.
The Ram deposit remains open at depth and along strike – offering opportunities for resource growth.
Notable results from the drilling program were 4.6m at 1.14% cobalt, 2.75% copper, and 1.01 grams per tonne gold; 3.5m at 1.46% cobalt, 2.75% copper, and 1.83g/t gold; and 5.4m at 0.60% cobalt, 1.36% copper, and 0.74g/t gold.
According to Jervois, the intervals typically include a high-grade component and medium grade zones, which provides a mineable width.
Advancing Idaho cobalt operations
Diamond core samples will be used in metallurgical test work to evaluate the capability of generating separate cobalt and copper concentrates.
Jervois has dispatched cobalt concentrate samples to customers for analysis with further concentrate shipments expected throughout this month and next.
With more data available on the project, Jervois noted its confidence in the economic potential of the resource was growing.
“This includes the potential to operate at higher production rates than currently formalised under existing feasibility studies,” Jervois stated.
The company pointed out a domestic cobalt refinery in the US would be positively impacted by a higher volume cobalt operation.
Idaho has an existing foreign measured and indicated resource of 3.87 million tonnes at 0.59% cobalt and 0.85% copper plus an inferred estimate of 1.82Mt at 0.46% cobalt and 0.81% copper.
To-date more than C$135 million (A$150 million) has been spent on advancing the project.
The current bankable feasibility study on Idaho is scheduled for completion by the end of March 2020.