Junior explorer Red Mountain Mining (ASX: RMX) is gearing up to start a drilling campaign next month at its Mt Mansbridge project in Western Australia’s Kimberley region targeting rare earth elements (REE).
Following a recently completed soil sampling survey, the company has identified two significant REE anomalies at the Killi-Killi prospect that form the main focus of a current mapping, rock chipping and drill targeting program.
The program is also assessing other prioritised targets previously identified from radiometric data and within historical data sets.
In an announcement today, Red Mountain said final mapping and a drill targeting site visit is currently underway with a drilling contractor secured and scheduled to commence in mid-September.
Heritage clearance, which is required prior to drilling activities, is anticipated in early September following surveying scheduled with traditional landowners.
Rare earth targets
Red Mountain is being supported by a co-funded grant under the WA mines department’s Exploration Incentive Scheme (EIS) of up to $150,000 to assist with the drill testing of REE targets.
The first soil anomaly identified at the Killi-Kill prospect is a heavy rare earths element (HREE) anomaly located on the western end of the Mt Mansbridge inlier. It lies on the prospective unconformable contact between the basement Killi-Killi formation and the overlying Gardiner sandstone.
The second Killi-Killi anomaly is a light rare earths element (LREE) anomaly that was partially defined by previous soil sampling programs. Following the latest soil survey, the anomaly has now been defined at a length of 1km and is again located on the prospective unconformable contact.
Elsewhere within the Mt Mansbridge project, identified REE targets include: the Mansbridge xenotime-dysprosium occurrence previously identified during uranium exploration by BHP (ASX: BHP); the Kylo xenotime-dysprosium occurrence found through rock chip samples collected by Northern Minerals; the Vader geochemical anomaly; and radiometric anomalies T3, T11, T15, T16, T17 and T30.
Other work at Mt Mansbridge
In addition to REE, Mt Mansbridge is considered prospective for nickel-copper-cobalt and platinum group element (PGE) mineralisation.
The company recently completed a fixed loop electromagnetic (FLEM) survey at the Déjà vu prospect but this failed to identify zones of conductivity that could be related to massive nickel-copper sulphide accumulations within the altered peridotite intrusion.
However, recent litho-geochemical studies have highlighted cobalt as likely primary magmatic related and suggest that anomalous cobalt values cannot be explained by observed silicate minerals within the peridotite only.
Therefore, Red Mountain remains focused on the cobalt potential of the intrusion and plans to undertake further reverse circulation drilling in its upcoming drilling campaign.
The company is also planning to drill test several nickel-copper-cobalt-PGE targets at its Cow Creek prospect.
Outside of Mt Mansbridge, Red Mountain told the market that assays have now been received from the first hole drilled at the Jacia prospect within the company’s Maitland gold and base metals project in WA’s Murchison region.
Drilling results are outstanding for the second hole drilled at the Maitland South prospect.