Perth-based Meteoric Resources (ASX: MEI) has updated its 2021 gold-copper hunts, beginning with the start of drilling at Palm Springs in Western Australia and reporting a brief interruption in Brazil after several positive COVID-19 tests.
In the case of the Juruena project in the South American country, where Meteoric is targeting what it has termed a potential “giant” copper-gold porphyry system, the site had to be evacuated briefly after the COVID-19 results, but drilling will resume next week.
“This evacuation is our first after more than a year of activity,” the company said.
In WA, Meteoric is seeking to build on its exploration success last year with a 7,000m drilling program planned to begin in May at the historic Butchers Creek open pit in the Halls Creek region.
Meteoric acquired the 12,000-hectare Palm Springs project in early 2020 which includes the old Butchers Creek shallow open pit that produced 52,000 ounces of gold at 2.1 grams per tonne.
The company has said there are 60 known gold occurrences along a 20km strike length.
Dewatering old pit begins next month
The 2021 field program will aim to extend recently discovered mineralisation at Butchers Creek to the southwest as well as target high-grade “fold hinge gold mineralisation”.
Meteoric is also looking to confirm and extend historic high-grade drilling beneath the old pit.
Dewatering at Butchers Creek will also begin next month.
A field reconnaissance team is now at Halls Creek.
The company said it achieved “truly spectacular” results in 2020, with one hole drilled last year intersecting 69m at 4.38g/t from 181m down hole, including 19m at 7.22g/t gold.
Drilling in Brazil has added ‘conviction’ to porphyry search
At present, the Juruena copper-gold project contains a global mineral estimate of 1.28 million tonnes at an average 6.3g/t gold, for a contained 260,900oz gold.
Meteoric owns 100% of 24 tenements on the western end of the Alta Floresta Belt in the Brazilian state of Mato Grosso, the area home to more than 40 known gold deposits, including mines operated by Anglo American and Vale.
Before the COVID-19 scare, Meteoric reports that a hole (JUDD042) currently at a depth of 650m had entered a zone which showed traces of the common porphyry copper metals including chalcopyrite and bornite.
“This is the first observation of the mineral bornite outside the Juruena Fault Zone at Crentes, adding further conviction to the porphyry search,” the company noted.
Hole JUDD042 still has 500m left to drill when work resumes next week before it reaches its final target of the Juruena Fault, where Meteoric recently intercepted 51m at 1.4g/t gold and 0.25% copper.
The company added that a resource update at the gold project is expected before the end of April.
This will encompass the past two years of drilling at the Dona Maria and Crentes prospects.