Junior explorer Stavely Minerals (ASX: SVY) has embarked on a major new regional exploration initiative across its wholly-owned Stavely copper-gold project in western Victoria.
The multi-pronged program follows the outcome of an intensive regional prospect review which identified 19 priority exploration targets.
It is being billed as the most comprehensive regional exploration program undertaken in the Stavely area in four decades.
Managing director Chris Cairns said the program would investigate a host of known and underexplored regional targets.
“We are now able to reassess the known targets with a refined understanding of the mineral systems in the region – given the massive learning experience we have had at the Thursday’s Gossan and Cayley Lode prospects – but we will also be ‘first mover’ on a large number of previously untested targets,” he said.
“We are excited about the regional potential we hope to be unlocking in the coming months.”
Volcanic belt segments
The Stavely project encompasses 115 kilometres of strike across the Stavely, Bunnugal, Elliott, Narrapumelap and Dryden volcanic belt segments which have been deemed highly-prospective for major porphyry discoveries.
While known prospects in the Stavely belt are partially exposed in a window of sub-crop extending over 20km of strike, the vast majority (or approximately 95km) of the project acreage is believed to be hidden under younger cover.
Toora West prospect
Mr Cairns said the discovery of porphyry-style mineralisation and alteration with shallow aircore drilling programs at the Toora West prospect demonstrates the company’s capacity to target ‘blind’ mineralisation.
Located within the Bunnugal segment, adjacent to the Yarrack Fault, Toora West is believed to host copper-molybdenum-gold with clear porphyry affinities.
Quartz-chalcopyrite-molybdenite veins sit within a Cambrian to Devonian package of high-magnesium basalt, andesite, volcaniclastics, dacite and granodiorite.
Previous diamond drilling by Stavely Minerals encountered late-mineral dacite and tonalite within a circular induced polarisation (IP) chargeability feature.
These intrusions are now considered likely to be late, barren intrusions associated with a discrete magnetic high.
Recent aircore programs at Toora West returned multiple anomalous intercepts of up to 0.61% copper, 222 parts per million molybdenum, 62ppm arsenic and 13ppm bismuth, in an unconstrained 1,600m by 1,000m geochemical anomaly comprising concentric copper, molybdenum, bismuth and arsenic haloes.
The results were associated with stockwork quartz veining, observed chalcopyrite, chalcocite and molybdenite and epidote alteration and minor potassium feldspar vein selvedges.
Three aircore holes encountered equi-granular granodiorite, while elevated vanadium-scandium and strontium-yttrium ratios in aircore and diamond core samples were consistent with an oxidised, hydrous magma – considered key ingredients for porphyry copper mineralisation.
Mr Cairns said the company will drill three additional diamond and aircore holes to test the copper-molybdenum mineralisation and close-out the geochemical anomaly.