King Island Scheelite (ASX: KIS) has secured a $70,000 exploration drilling grant incentive from the Tasmanian Government to assist in greenfields exploration at its licences surrounding the historic Dolphin tungsten project on the state’s King Island.
The co-funded incentive was introduced to stimulate state-wide exploration in mineral, oil and gas and geothermal projects and provides a pool of $2 million over four years to help companies with their direct drilling costs.
Funding is capped at $50,000 and companies can benefit from an additional $20,000 if helicopter support is required.
Extensions of mineralisation
King Island Scheelite received two grants for drilling at Dolphin to test new conceptual extensions of known tungsten mineralisation identified in previous drilling.
The company has planned a four-hole diamond program comprising three holes to test south along strike of mineralisation at the Investigator 24 prospect, and one hole to test north of the Investigator 21 target.
Under the timing requirements of the grants, King Island Scheelite will mobilise a drill rig to the project site before year end.
The grant is available until April 2022, requiring activities to be completed this coming summer.
The drilling grant adds to a 10-year, $10 million loan facility received from the Tasmanian Government in February to support Dolphin’s re-development.
The funding was secured not long after release of a revised feasibility study which boosted the project’s expected net present value figures by 65% to $241 million.
“This funding significantly enhances [our] financial strength and flexibility at an exciting time [for our company],” King Island Scheelite said at the time.
“It empowers us to continue our development program at Dolphin, which hosts one of the few high quality tungsten deposits remaining in the Western world.”
Historic mining town
The historic Dolphin project is located near the mining town of Grassy, on the southeast coast of King Island.
It was developed to service the Dolphin mine which produced scheelite up until its closure in 1992.
Today, Dolphin hosts 2.9 million tonnes of probable reserves at 0.73% tungsten oxide, including an underground component of 1.5Mt at 1.24% tungsten oxide.
The revised feasibility study indicates a six-year underground operation on top of an eight year open pit mine.
The open pit has been approved to process 400,000t of ore a year, generating 275,000 metric tonne units of tungsten oxide.
Last month, King Island Scheelite received the first environmental approvals for the project’s mine management plan.