Astro Resources NL's (ASX:ARO) detailed modelling of data from a January 2021 DC/IP survey utilising two separate techniques has confirmed the presence of a large chargeability anomaly within the Needles Property in Nevada, USA.
The company has interpreted that the anomaly reflects the presence of disseminated pyrite mineralisation with which gold maybe associated.
This data modelling, along with Astro’s seismic survey, has also indicated the presence of numerous cross-cutting structures that may contain high-grade gold mineralisation within the shallowly dipping volcanic host rocks and three major post-mineralisation structures that appear to confine the chargeability anomaly.
“Confirming Needles prospectivity”
The company now plans to begin a diamond drilling program comprising three 500-metre deep drill holes to test the anomaly in the September quarter with a fourth hole to target mineralisation beneath the Tomahawk Shaft and workings.
Astro chairman Jacob Khouri said: “The confirmation of the significant chargeability anomaly within the Needles Property, which is believed to reflect the presence of significant disseminated pyrite and possible gold mineralisation, is highly encouraging.
“As a result, the Astro board has escalated the proposed work program with the aim of confirming the high prospectivity of the Needles Project as quickly as possible.
“The decision to undertake a four-hole campaign reflects the board’s confidence in the Needles Project.”
Expanded exploration budget
Before the results of the geophysical programs were available, Astro estimated a drilling and reporting budget of around A$720,000 for shallower testing using a RC rig.
The positive results from these programs have enabled the company to expand this budget to A$1.3 million - the estimated cost of drilling four diamond drill-holes and subsequent analysis and reporting.
These diamond drill holes will provide important additional data, including structural orientation of mineralisation from drill core measurements, and will also provide the opportunity to run a sonic log and/or a vertical seismic profile survey - which will help confine the depth of already located structures and stratigraphic horizons.
It will enable realistic estimations of the electrical properties from measurements of the core, which will provide addition constraints on the DC/IP interpretation.
Map of Needles property showing DC/IP and seismic survey lines and the chargeability anomaly.
Planned drilling in Q3
Astro is proceeding to securing a contract driller to undertake the necessary work and has been in discussion with two suitable drilling companies, both of which have indicated availability if personnel can be obtained.
The company is also applying to the Bureau of Lands Management (BLM) for the necessary approvals to undertake the work – which is expected to get underway in the third quarter of 2021.
Astro has engaged a Nevada based environmental and permitting consulting company, EM Strategies Inc, to carry out required environmental studies across the target area which are in progress.