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Theta Gold Mines advances development and financing negotiations for Starter Theta Project

As part of the detailed engineering design for the mining structures, a geotechnical assessment was carried out at footprints for the waste rock dumps and pollution control dams.

Theta Gold Mines Ltd - Theta Gold Mines completes detailed engineering design works at Starter Theta Project in South Africa
Geotechnical drilling of one of the footprints at the Starter Theta Project

Theta Gold Mines Ltd (ASX:TGM) has completed a geotechnical drilling program and geophysical surveys as part of continued development activities at the Starter Theta Project in South Africa.

As part of the detailed engineering design for the mining structures, a geotechnical assessment was carried out at footprints for the waste rock dumps and pollution control dams.

Theta Gold is also advancing well with financing negotiations with a number of parties and some of these are now moving towards the next stage.

"Critical initiatives"

Theta Gold chairman Bill Guy said: “The company continues to advance the Theta Gold Project and has now completed a number of critical project development initiatives.

"These include the onsite geophysics, geotechnical drilling and sampling to support engineering studies and we will then progress to the detailed engineering and civils designs for implementation.

"This is a large and important body of work."

Geotechnical assessment

The geotechnical assessment, which was undertaken at various areas at the project site, followed a three-step approach:

  • Test pits on the footprint areas and soils sent for geotechnical evaluation;
  • Geophysical assessment of targeted areas; and 
  • RC and Triple Core drilling in identified areas of geotechnical concern.

Data gathered from this work has been used to inform the engineering designs of the waste rock dumps and pollution control dams.

Final results next month 

Following the geophysical interpretation, the design engineers selected a total of 43 drill hole locations for RC and diamond core drilling.

The company has engaged two drilling contractors to complete the drilling activities, Torque Africa (involved with the Theta Project drilling campaign) and Enviro Geotech Drilling Services.

Both were selected specifically because they could provide mobile rigs that could access steep topography with minimal requirements for access construction

A total of 1,260 metres of RC and 137 metres of diamond core drilling was completed as part of the assessment.

RC chips and core are being evaluated with final results expected in September. 

The program has demonstrated that the designs as proposed for the various structures will meet the required engineering and safety standards for structures of this nature.

Engineers will now progress with the finalisation of the design reports and once the confirmatory analysis results are back from the laboratory, reports will be submitted for design approval to the appropriate government authorities and as part of the Water Use Licence Application.

Test pits

A total of 11 test pits were excavated, inspected, profiled, photographed and sampled by a geotechnical engineer.

The samples were then sent to a laboratory for foundation indicator testing (sieve and hydrometer analyses plus Atterberg Limits).

Based on the visual inspections during the field investigation and the laboratory test results, it is considered unlikely expansive soils will be encountered.

Financing negotiations

In regard to the financing negotiations, Theta is focused on pursuing opportunities that result in minimal dilution to shareholders and a number of propositions are being assessed by the board.

Guy said: “We are also pleased to confirm very encouraging engagement from a number of potential project financiers that have now completed an extensive review of the project, the financial returns it could potentially generate as well as a thorough risk assessment.

"Feedback has been pleasing and several are moving to the next stage. We look forward to providing updates on this process very soon and delivering more critical project development milestones.

"All activities are tracking to plan.”

Quick facts: Theta Gold Mines Ltd

Price: 0.275 AUD

ASX:TGM
Market: ASX
Market Cap: $126.2 m
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