Battery Mineral Sources (TSXV:BMR) has launched preliminary drill core assay outcomes from the continuing 2021 exploration and in-fill drill program at its lately acquired cornerstone asset, Minera Altos de Punitaqui (MAP), an built-in copper mining complicated within the Coquimbo area of Chile, about 30 miles south of Teck Sources’ (TSX: TECK.A/TECK.B; NYSE: TECK) Andacollo copper mine.
Drilling returned 9 meters at 2.06% copper and 20.5 grams per tonne silver and three metres grading 1.52% copper and a pair of.0 grams per tonne silver from two holes.
At the moment, three drills are working on-site, and a fourth is on the way in which.
2,501 meters of diamond core drilling in 14 drill holes have been accomplished, or are in progress on the San Andres deposit. 9 drill holes have reached goal depth and 6 have intersected important mineralization.
Punitaqui was acquired by Glencore (LSE: GLEN) in 2010, who operated MAP for eight years and it was persistently worthwhile. However when Glencore merged with Xstrata, it didn’t make sense for the corporate to maintain on a measurement foundation, says Jacob Willoughby, Battery Mineral Sources’ VP, company improvement and technique.
In 2019, Xiana Mining (TSXV: XIA) paid Glencore US$25 million and a 1.5% web smelter royalty to amass Punitaqui, which 2018 was then working at its totally permitted capability of three,600 tonnes per day producing copper concentrates that additionally contained gold and silver mineralization.
The Punitaqui mill was fed from 4 completely different underground deposits: San Andres, Cinabrio, Cinabrio Norte and Dalmacia. In accordance with its 2018 NI43-101 technical report, Punitaqui has a measured and indicated useful resource of over 6.9 million tonnes grading 1.3% copper.
Xiana needed to place Punitaqui on care and upkeep final April as copper costs plummeted to a 10-year low as a result of results of Covid-19 and the corporate went into Chilean chapter. BMR acquired Punitaqui from Xiana in Might of 2021.
BMR is working to fully revise the assets outlined by Xiana and improve as a lot as doable to confirmed and possible reserves by Q1, 2022. The corporate is drilling 6,000 metres at Punitaqui, aiming for a useful resource replace and detailed mine plan, whereas additionally focussing on discovering new assets in near-mine areas.
Battery Mineral Sources can also be the biggest landholder within the Ontario-Quebec cobalt belt, with possession of 125,000 hectares and is creating one among most superior cobalt properties within the area, McAra, a +1.1 million pound useful resource with 499.8 tonnes of cobalt contained in measured and indicated assets. Drilling on its 9 cobalt tasks is ongoing, the place 9,000 metres are anticipated to be accomplished by mid Q1 2022.
Punitaqui’s identified deposits are a part of a 25 kilometre-long mineralized district that could be a traditional IOCG and mantos-style copper belt that contains mantos and structural managed copper-gold-silver veins.
Along with the 4 beforehand mined deposits, MAP has quite a few regional targets for speedy exploration which presents them district-scale potential and whereas being positioned shut sufficient to potential feed the Punitaqui plant, the place all of the infrastructure is already in place.
Punitaqui is totally permitted for 3,000 tonnes per day with allowances of as much as 3,600 tonnes per day. Along with ongoing drill marketing campaign, BMR is evaluating potential tailings work and upgrades on the plant previous to restarting the plant round mid-year 2022, with mining and underground improvement anticipated to start round Might.
Willoughby says the mine, named after the city positioned three miles away, was a major employer, and the neighborhood is as supportive of the mine restart as staff are desperate to get again on the job.
“We’re assured we will produce about 25 million kilos of copper in think about an annual, full-year foundation at roughly US$2.00 to US$2.25 per pound on a money value foundation – we’re trying to generate US$50 million in EBITA on a full working 12 months foundation,” says Willoughby.
This estimate is predicated on a 4 12 months mine life on the present assets of the 4 mixed deposits, however there’s numerous exploration to be accomplished across the web site and on satellite tv for pc deposits, Willoughby notes.
“We estimate US$150 million has [already] been put into the mines, mill and related infrastructure, with a complete substitute value of roughly US$120 million – we bought tremendously fortunate on this acquisition.”
For the reason that property have been on care and upkeep since April 2020, restart prices are estimated at solely $6 million to $9 million, with most of that comprising underground improvement and drilling.
The San Andres drill program is designed to substantiate and prolong the useful resource definition drilling to the north and the south and prolong mineralization at depth. Outcomes from the continuing program at Punitaqui are anticipated to be launched each two to a few weeks till the present marketing campaign is accomplished in This autumn.
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