Chile produces extra copper than any nation on this planet. However what about gold? One Vancouver-based junior explorer is in search of Chile’s subsequent company-maker gold deposit, and it is already discovering similarities with one other long-time gold and silver producing mine.
Gap PPRC-22-36 proved to be the spotlight amongst 18 reverse-circulation drill holes printed by Astra Exploration Inc. (ASTR.TSX.V) following the corporate’s first drill program at its flagship Pampa Paciencia gold-silver mission in northern Chile.
The outlet returned 3 meters grading 3.96 grams per tonne gold (3.96 g/t Au) and 37.67 g/t silver (Ag) as a part of a broader intercept of 0.92 g/t Au and eight.61 g/t Ag over 31 meters on the Paciencia vein. The junior explorer now is aware of the mineralized zone within the Paciencia vein is a minimum of 300 meters lengthy —and it stays open at depth and alongside strike.
One other spotlight was gap PPRC-22-24 (learn this as: Pampa Paciencia reverse circulation-year-hole quantity) which hit 2.78 g/t Au and 75.6 g/t Ag over 2 meters, as a part of a broader zone of 0.72 g/t gold and 19.38 g/t silver over 25 meters downhole on the Paciencia Oeste (Paciencia West) vein. This means a second mineralized zone, which is a minimum of 200 meters lengthy — it, too, stays open at depth and alongside strike.
The 18 holes had been a part of a 29-hole reverse-circulation drill marketing campaign that wrapped up earlier this yr. Outcomes from the opposite 11 holes had been printed on Could 2. Your entire drill program value the corporate an reasonably priced CA$650,000.
The “best-in-show” gap amongst these printed within the first launch was PPRC-22-12, which hit 14.48 g/t Au and 39.7 g/t Ag over 3 meters, inside 21 meters operating 2.71 g/t Au and 10.8 g/t Ag; whereas the runner-up was gap PPRC-22-13, which returned 3.28 g/t Au and 58.3 g/t Ag over 6 meters, as a part of a broader zone of 1.6 g/t Au and 21.3 g/t Ag over 22 meters.
The vein buildings at Pacienca Oeste and Paceincia Este had been between 10 and 20 meters thick — that’s true thickness — and these occurred in shallow drill holes, often 15 to 25 meters beneath floor (one gap went down so far as 75 meters at Paciencia Oeste).
Astra CEO Brian Miller says Astra’s discovery of some “blind veins” at Pampa Paciencia lends credibility to its exploration strategies. Maybe extra importantly — as gap PPRC-22-12 demonstrates, a minimum of partially — drilling revealed two high-grade ore shoots (at Paciencia and Paciencia Oeste) within the Paciencia vein system that stay open alongside strike and at depth.
“The vein thickness is persistently broad, and indicative of a giant epithermal system below the gravel cowl. We’ve recognized two mineralized shoots, outlined 1.4 kilometers of vein strike, and found two blind veins beneath the duvet — all of that are shallow (lower than 120 meters beneath floor) drill intersections and open at depth,” Astra CEO Brian Miller instructed Streetwise Experiences.
Of observe, drilling thus far has occurred in a comparatively small space of the North Zone that represents about 10% of the mission space. Which means 90% of the mission space has but to be examined.
Someday this summer season Astra plans to start out its “Section 2” drill program to increase the open intersections and probe for extra veins.
Similarities with El Peñón
The corporate just isn’t shy about evaluating Pampa Pacienca to the El Peñón gold-silver mine, operated by Yamana Gold, some 175 km north — it’s one of many first issues you’ll learn on Astra’s web site.
Pampa Paciencia reveals indicators that it’s an epithermal gold-silver discovery. It lies in the identical geological belt in the identical nation and in host rocks which might be the identical age as El Peñón. The previous mine stays in manufacturing, and it produced greater than 400,000 oz Au yearly at its peak.
The deposits at El Peñón are low to intermediate epithermal gold-silver deposits, hosted in steeply dipping fault-controlled veins, whereas Astra describes Pampa Paciencia as a “low-sulphidation epithermal gold-silver mission.”
Astra should conduct extra exploration to verify that Pampa Paciencia is certainly its “doppelganger.” And the junior explorer has the correct group on board to guide the cost.
Astra Director Darcy Marud was a member of the Meridian Gold group that found El Peñón within the mid Nineties. He later grew to become senior vice-president of exploration with Yamana Gold after the most important purchased Meridian in 2007. He remained with Yamana till 2017.
(Need another similarity between Pampa Paciencia and El Peñón? Meridian Gold additionally had a CEO named Brian — Brian Kennedy).
Astra Exploration Director Diego Guido additionally has some discoveries below his belt. He’s credited with the invention of the Pingüino deposit in Santa Cruz, Argentina, and labored at Newmont Corp.’s (NEM:NYSE) Cerro Negro throughout its discovery.
Lengthy earlier than Astra began drilling, the exploration group accomplished property-wide mapping and sampling, in addition to localized trenching. The work helped outline a mineralized vein boulder discipline over roughly three-quarters of the mission space, and the boulders had been used to assist decide drill targets.
Many of the drilling centered on the 1.4 -kilometer-long Paciencia vein system within the North Zone, which is comprised of Paciencia Oeste, Paciencia, and Paciencia Este vein segments.
Pampa Paciencia sits on a 38-square-kilometer land bundle with highway entry. It’s lower than 15 kilometers from the Sierra Gorda copper-molybdenum mine, managed by Polish firm KGHM Polska Miedź S.A. (55%), and 5 kilometers from the Faride mine, one other low-sulphidation epithermal vein deposit. Faride is a small operation now owned by Sierra Gorda.
Astra listed at CA$0.30 per share in late January. Since then it’s been battered by a downward-trending broad market and closed at CA$0.19 on Could 24. However technical analyst Clive Maund sees upside from right here in a Could 25 put up.
Maund writes: “After hitting backside, [Astra] reversed into a mild uptrend, which is constant, and the response of the previous a number of weeks again throughout this uptrend channel to its decrease boundary is considered as presenting a shopping for alternative, particularly given the great drilling outcomes that had been printed this morning.”
Administration owns about 26%, whereas Enviornment Minerals owns 23% (5.82 million shares). Toronto-based Dundee Valuable Metals additionally has a place.
Totally diluted, Astra has about 27 million shares excellent.
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