The project is 160 kilometres west of Hanoi in the Son La province of Vietnam and includes an existing modern nickel mine currently under care and maintenance.
Blackstone’s maiden drilling results are consistent with historic drilling and confirm the potential for a large unmined disseminated sulphide prospect at Ban Phuc.
Blackstone Mineral’s managing director Scott Williamson said: “The initial results from our maiden drilling at Ta Khoa have confirmed we have a large unmined, disseminated sulphide body at Ban Phuc.
“We look forward to more results from the IP survey to define further targets for our second phase of deeper drilling which we will commence over the coming weeks.”
Notable results include:
- 22 metres at 0.76% nickel, 0.13% copper and 0.01% cobalt from 138 metres, including 5 metres at 2.23%, 0.17% and 0.03% from 138 metres;
- 17.8 metres at 1%, 0.09% and 0.01% from 106.6 metres; and
- 45.5 metres at 1.2%, 0.17% and 0.01% from 56.5 metres.
Previous project owners focused mining and exploration efforts on the MSV at Ban Phuc, while Blackstone will look to explore both MSV targets as well as DSS targets throughout the entire Ta Khoa project.
Blackstone will also conduct further geophysics on the MSV and DSS deposits and continue the substantial drilling campaign.
The company aims to deliver a maiden resource on the disseminated sulphides found at Ban Phuc over the coming months and investigate the potential to re-start the Ban Phuc concentrator through focused exploration on both MSV and DSS deposits.
The company will also begin metallurgical testing on the Ban Phuc disseminated orebody to support a flow sheet for a product suitable for the lithium ion battery industry.
In addition, Blackstone will investigate the potential to develop downstream processing infrastructure in Vietnam to produce a downstream nickel and cobalt product to supply Asia’s growing lithium battery industry.