Alice Queen Ltd (ASX:AQX) has received encouraging indications of a porphyry copper-gold system at the Yarindury Project within the highly prospective Northern Molong Volcanic Belt in Central West NSW.
A recent reconnaissance mud rotary-diamond drilling program at the Woodlands prospect targeted prominent basement magnetic and gravity features.
Three exploratory holes, which returned rocks belonging to the Molong Volcanic Belt and having shoshonitic affinity, were followed up by a further six holes for 1,814.2 metres.
Potential porphyry system
Alice Queen’s managing director Andrew Buxton said, “We have been approaching the Northern Molong Belt systematically over the past four years, acquiring ground, generating targets and now testing these targets.
“We are most excited to have indicators of a potential porphyry system from the last three holes at Woodlands.”
Yarindury covers 125 square kilometres of Ordovician basement rocks belonging to the Northern Molong Volcanic Belt which hosts Alkane Resource Limited’s (ASX:ALK) Boda prospect which has returned 1,167 metres at 0.55 g/t gold and 0.25% copper.
The Woodlands anomaly was tested by three holes all of which intersected basement between 148 and 191 metres deep.
Geological setting of Yarindury showing the locations of target anomalies.
Indicators of porphyry copper-gold potential were identified:
- Disseminated chalcopyrite-prehnite-epidote patches (1-metre at 0.23% copper from 311 metres) with an adjacent garnet-bearing complex vein at 312.55 metres at bottom of hole hosted by hornblende gabbro. These features are interpreted as being distal skarnoid related.
- A porphyritic basalt dyke returned 3 metres at 0.16% copper from 217 metres. The copper is contained in chalcopyrite-bornite patches with epidote selvages.
- About 50-metre thick (true width) intersection of shoshonitic biotite-hornblende bearing monzonite. A Late Ordovician age was determined for the monzonite by U-Pb laser ablation analyses of zircon grains from a single half core sample 288.7 metres downhole. Late Ordovician shoshonitic intrusions are key targets in the Macquarie Arc.
NQ core showing chalcopyrite-epidote clots in porphyritic basalt dyke at 218.5 metres.
These results are encouraging in that this first drill program returned mineralisation and mineralogical indicators of copper-gold porphyry potential.
This is not surprising considering porphyry copper-gold mineralisation hosted by monzonite occurs 5 kilometres south of the tenement in the Comobella intrusive complex at Glen Hollow.
Regional magnetic imagery suggests that Woodlands is a covered and largely unexplored extension of the host rocks exposed in that southern region.
Buxton said: “We are in the process of preparing new targets for further testing within the Woodlands prospect.
“Furthermore, the Northern Molong Belt is continuing to demonstrate its fertility and in particular Yarindury is proving to be a target-rich environment with many more target areas still remaining to be tested.”
Encouraged by these positive indicators of fertile rocks and increasing understanding of the basement geology, Alice Queen plans to continue drilling to test anomalies.
Aircore and reverse circulation (RC) drilling are scheduled at the relatively shallow Saxa and Binginbar anomalies.
RC-diamond drilling is planned for the moderately buried Coorong, Baragonumbel and Muronbung Park anomalies with mud-rotary-diamond core drilling of Forest View, Bullaburra and Woodlands anomalies.