A review of historic drilling geochemistry has provided Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) and its partners Australian Vanadium Ltd and Mercator Metals Pty Ltd with a range of drill targets at the Coates Mafic Intrusive Complex near Wundowie in Western Australia
The three companies, which hold licences in close proximity to each other at Coates, recently agreed to collaborate to advance exploration for nickel (Ni), copper (Cu), PGE and gold in the area.
The tenements are located just 29 km southeast of the recent nickel, copper and platinum group elements (PGE) discovery at by Chalice Gold Mines at Julimar.
Lithium Australia MD, Adrian Griffin,said the three partners are now planning to head out into the field to undertake an on-the-ground study of the potential identified by the review of drilling geochemistry.
The companies are currently developing a conservation management plan and drawing up land-owner access agreements.
Field work will include extensive geochemical and geophysical programmes across the combined Lithium Australia, Australian Vanadium and Mercator tenement areas.
Rapid analysis of soil samples for Ni, Cu and chromium using field-portable X-ray fluorescence will be followed by analysis for precious metals (Au, palladium and platinum) by a commercial laboratory.
The resulting Ni geochemical targets will be surveyed using moving-loop electro- magnetic equipment to detect conductive rock types, which may include Ni sulphides. Conductive targets will then be drilled.
“The companies are well aware of the market excitement generated by nickel and PGE targets such as the Coates Mafic Intrusion and are keen to get onto the ground,” Mr Griffin said. “however, we take our social and environmental responsibilities very seriously, and getting these things right at the start of a project will pave the way for enduring good relations with all stakeholders as the project develops.”