An underground diamond drilling programme has commenced drilling near Blackham Resources Limited’s (ASX: BLK) Wiluna plant in WA targeting high-grade, free-milling ore bodies.
Blackham’s Executive Chairman, Milan Jerkovic, said the drilling contractor is testing reserve extension targets of what is planned to be an initial 13-hole programme, with results expected to be received and modelled in the December quarter.
Mr Jerkovic said underground mining operations at Golden Age continue to deliver and the extraction of ore in the Sep’19 quarter totalled 4,958 mined oz (29,773t at 5.2g/t) (Jun’19 Qtr: 29,026t @ 3.9g/t for 3,600oz).
Golden Age has successfully been extended on a rolling six month basis since underground operations began in 2016.
The initial programme will test extensions for immediate mining, with targets intended to be brought into the mine plan over the next 12-18 months and beyond.
Mr Jerkovic said Blackham has quantified an exploration target totalling between 87koz to 317koz for the Wiluna free-milling targets.
He said there has previously been insufficient exploration to define mineral resources and it is uncertain if further exploration will result in the determination of mineral resources.
Exploration targets have been quantified using a range of parameters including extent of existing resources, strike of known mineralised structures, exploration drilling results, face sampling and mapping where available. Geological interpretations are continuing with a view to refining drill programs to test these targets.
The recent gold production at Golden Age underground demonstrates the potential to continue to define extensions at our highest-grade ore body, with increased levels of gold production possible over the next 12-18 months,” Mr Jerkovic said.
“This is consistent with Blackham’s strategy to focus on mining our highest margin free-milling ore bodies whilst pursuing the low-cost expansion pathway to 120kozpa gold production from sulphides.”