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Emmerson Resources chases more high-grade gold at Tennant Creek

Emmerson Resources has started following up recent gold hits as high as 36.2g/t gold at the prospective Mauretania area of its Tennant Creek project in the Northern Territory.
Emmerson Resources chases more high-grade gold at Tennant Creek

Emmerson Resources (ASX:ERM) has started following up recent gold hits as high as 36.2g/t gold at the prospective Mauretania area of its Tennant Creek project in the Northern Territory.

The 3,000-metre infill reverse circulation drilling program follow assays delivered earlier this month from three recent holes which found shallow, high-grade gold in an area where rock chips have graded up to 214g/t gold.

Assay re-splits from this work have enhanced the initial results in both the primary and supergene zones with the following readings:

- 31 metres at 3.49g/t gold, 16.7g/t silver, 0.45% copper and 773 ppm bismuth from 57 metres – including 19 metres at 5.50g/t gold,17.2g/t silver, 0.11% bismuth, 0.33% copper from 60 metres; or 2 metres at 36.2g/t gold, 7.20g/t silver, 0.32% bismuth, 0.39% copper from 63 metres

- 26 metres at 1.08% copper, 15.1g/t silver, 0.48g/t gold from 77 metres from a lower copper-rich zone

The current drilling will test shallow supergene mineralisation, similar to that at the former Nobles Nob mine which produced over 1.1 million ounces of gold at an average recovered grade of 17.3g/t gold from a small footprint of about 200 metres in strike extent and within 100 metres of the surface.

The Nobles endowment helps define the region hosting Tennant Creek as a jurisdiction for bonanza-grade gold.

The Tennant Creek Mineral Field (TCMF) is one of Australia’s highest grade gold and copper fields producing over 5.5 million ounces of gold and 470,000 tonnes of copper from a variety of deposits including Gecko, Orlando, Warrego, White Devil, Chariot and Golden Forty, all of which are within Emmerson’s exploration and joint venture portfolio.

Emmerson holds 2,500 square kilometres of ground in the TCMF, owns the only gold mill in the region and holds a substantial geological database plus extensive infrastructure and equipment. Emmerson has consolidated 95% of the highly prospective TCMF where only 8% of the historical drilling has penetrated below 150 metres.

Within Emmerson’s ground holding in the region, a higher grade resource of 100,000 ounces of gold at 17g/t gold has also been defined.

Historically, grades have been in the range of 15-10g/t for gold and 2-4% for copper.

Exploration partnership

Emmerson is exploring the TCMF in conjunction with Evolution Mining (ASX:EVN) following the signing of a farm-in agreement in June last year.

Evolution is continuing to sole fund exploration expenditure of $15 million over three years to earn a 65% interest in Emmerson’s tenement holdings in the TCMF as part of stage 1 of the deal.

Exploration expenditure attributable to the stage 1 farm-in to date is approximately $6.5 million.


New drilling at Tennant Creek is also encompassing a 1,000-metre infill program in the Gecko-Goanna area to follow up drilling in August which returned copper grades up to 10.6%. 

Multiple zones of high grade copper included

- 7 metres at 5.98% copper from 123 metres including 3 metres at 10.4% copper;
- 3 metres at 4.75% copper from 162 metres including 1 metres at 10.6% copper; and
- 1 metres at 2.37% copper from 221 metres.

The style of copper mineralisation intersected in this area is considered to have potential to greatly expand the existing Gecko resource of 6.6 million tonnes at 0.7g/t gold and 1.8% copper for 145,000 ounces of gold and 122,000 tonnes of copper metal.


New drilling at Mauretania represents an opportunity to expand on the initial exploration results which excited investors earlier this month. Shares in Emmerson jumped more than 30% after first-pass drilling at the prospect returned grades of more than 3g/t gold over 30 metres.

The current drilling therefor appears likely to trigger more investor responses as the gold price holds encouragingly over the A$1,600-per-tonne mark.

Shares in Emmerson were last trading at $0.053, which represents a 89% increase since August. However, there are plenty more share price drivers ahead as exploration newsflow heats up.

Drilling at Gecko also appears promising as strong mineralisation undetected by previous explores continues to come to light.

Seismic modelling has indicated that the drilling conducted so far at Gecko has not been in the optimal position – which bodes well for the prospect of even larger discoveries in the upcoming drilling.

The steady development of Emmerson’s Tennant Creek holdings during commodity cycle changes has been realised via supportive long-term JVs with Ivanhoe and now Evolution.

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