The company’s Armada project sits around 40 kilometres east of Newcrest Mining Limited’s (ASX:NCM) multi-million-ounce Telfer Gold-copper mine and is adjacent to the Havieron gold and copper discovery, operated by Newcrest under a farm-in agreement with Greatland Gold PLC (LON:GGP).
The project covers 605 square kilometres of the highly prospective Patersons Range in the East Pilbara.
Artemis executive director Edward Mead told Proactive the company was confident it could potentially find strike extensions to the Havieron trend.
He said: “Greatland has said that the ore body is 150 metres wide which is quite exceptional, and the likelihood that there are repetitions of what they’re drilling now is extremely high.
“We don’t know yet that Newcrest is in the best spot or if there is more to come.”
The Moodoo seismic line
The company’s exploration to date has been informed by reprocessing data from the 1987 Moodoo seismic line, which is publicly available information.
Mead said: “The data indicated significant folding within the basement and several structures of interest and around the Orion and Romulan targets identified by Artemis.”
Informed by Havieron results
The company’s understanding of the mineralisation was reinforced by Newcrest also using Moodoo seismic line data in its December quarterly report.
Mead said: “While we initially didn’t have a view on the orientation of the fold structures, Newcrest has since released information showing where they think they’ve got access to the folds.
“They showed what’s going on with folding, hinge failure, hydrothermal fluid concentrations, so we have an idea of how the mineralisation flows.
“You could argue there are a lot of structural similarities to Telfer which bodes well for the fact that we are about two kilometres north along trend of Havieron.”
Next steps for exploration
The company has defined seven priority targets worthy of follow-up with further geophysics, geochemistry and drilling planned.
Mead said: “The next step is to do a mobile metal-ion geochemistry program which is exactly what Greatland did over Havieron.
“Partly because of location and ease of access, we’ll be looking to do that around our tenement boundary which surrounds Havieron.”
Artemis has always had an exploration strategy in place but has kept a close eye on its neighbours’ drilling activities.
Mead said: “The geochemistry technique we want to use can only be done in the dry months due to the sensitivity of the geochemistry.
“So, the summer period has given us time to sit back and have a look at what’s going on as Newcrest continues to drill.
“How Havieron develops could definitely feed in to how we decide to drill going forward.”
Well-placed amongst peers
Artemis believes the region is highly prospective and that the company could benefit from its neighbours’ existing infrastructure if it makes a significant gold discovery.
Mead said: “Newcrest has a 24 million tonne per annum mill that’s got about three years of mine life and they are desperate for ore feed – that’s why they’ve been going hard at Havieron.
“Once Newcrest define a resource (which they have stated will be by the end of this year) I expect that will be when they want to build out to feed the mill, and along the Havieron trend is where they will be focusing.”
The company will consider further drill results from Havieron to generate better target selection for its drilling program going forward.