SolGold has started drilling at its Porvenir copper-gold project in southern Ecuador after receiving all scout drilling regulatory approvals.
The project is located about 100 km north of the Peruvian border in Zamora Chinchipe province, and is situated within the Jurassic segment of the Andean porphyry belt, which hosts several of the world’s largest and most significant copper and gold deposits.
Drilling operations are currently underway at Target 15, using one hybrid man-portable machine, modified to drill diamond core down to 1,800 metres depth. This drill hole is part of an 8,000-metre initial drilling program planned for Porvenir.
The initial drill hole is currently at a depth of 16.7 metres and is designed to test the depth extent of outcropping surface mineralization in Cacharposa Creek that returned an open-ended rock-saw channel result of 147.8 metres, grading at 0.69% copper-equivalent (0.43 g/t gold, 0.37% copper), including, 82.63 metres of 1.08% copper-equivalent (0.71 g/t gold, 0.55% copper).
According to SolGold, the surface mineralization at Cacharposa Creek displays soil and rock geochemistry features that “are often conspicuous at many world-class porphyry deposits.”
“The coincident geophysical and geochemical anomalies over an extensive surface outcrop that returned an open-ended ore grade intercept of over 140 metres at about 0.7% copper-equivalent is an extraordinary target that we believe potentially represents a large exposed porphyry copper-gold deposit and a second major porphyry discovery for the company within Ecuador,” regional exploration manager Chris Connell said.
“The 13 high-priority regional targets covered by 75 granted tenements represent a significant pipeline of wholly owned quality assets. We look forward to updating the market with visual mineralization estimates and core photos as drilling progresses at Porvenir,” Connell added.
Field studies of the porphyry-related vein types and paragenesis at Target 15 are ongoing, and initial work indicates a sequential vein development typical of many significant porphyry copper-gold systems, such as SolGold’s giant Alpala porphyry copper-gold deposit in northern Ecuador.
The company believes the mineralization style, geochemical footprint and geometry are consistent with surface exposure of a vertically extensive, well-preserved porphyry copper-gold system.
Earlier this week, SolGold received a US$100-million investment from metals streaming company Franco–Nevada, which it will use to progress the Alpala copper-gold project.
This story first appeared on www.mining.com.