Aurora Energy Metals (ASX:1AE) reports it is preparing to commence phase one reverse circulation drilling at its namesake project in Oregon, USA, targeting lithium and uranium.
The company states this will be the first drilling at the project in a decade, and it expects to start the program next week.
The 17 hole drilling program of around 3,400m received approval from the Bureau of Land Management earlier this year, and Aurora has been advised by the Oregon Department of Geology and Mineral Industries (DOGAMI) that it is finalising documentation for the issue of the permit next week.
The location of the holes and the defined DOGAMI Phase One Project Area is a subset of a larger planned exploration drilling program consisting of 47 RC holes and 21 diamond drill holes for the 2022 to 2023 financial year, and phase one drilling is expected to be complete in December with assays to be submitted progressively with results expected in December.
The program will target uranium and lithium mineralisation, with the first 8 priority holes focused northwest of the existing Aurora Uranium Deposit.
“We are excited about the prospect of commencing our first drilling campaign since listing on the ASX just 5 months ag”
Aurora decided to commence in this area based on uranium intersections from the 5 most northern holes drilled in the Company’s 2011 diamond drilling exploration program, which delivered ‘shallow, thick high-grade’ results.
Aurora Managing Director Greg Cochran said the company is thrilled to start commencing drilling at the project.
“We are excited about the prospect of commencing our first drilling campaign since listing on the ASX just 5 months ago.
“Importantly we have developed a clearer understanding of the expectations of the various regulatory bodies involved in permitting these programs, which should make the process smoother in the future.”.
The Midnight Sun Drilling company has been engaged as the drill contractor, and its team is currently mobilising to Aurora’s recently acquired exploration base in McDermitt, Nevada.
Aurora adopted a phased permitting approach to adhere to DOGAMI’s 640 acre project area restriction, and recently submitted an amended exploration permit application to BLM incorporating all the remaining holes of the 2022 to 2023 financial year program.
The application was amended to accommodate recommendations made during the heritage survey completed in September.
Previous lithium intersections recorded by the 2011 drilling program includes 19.2m @ 1,161ppm eU3O8 in hole AUD028, and 40.2m @ 672ppm eU3O8 and 27.3m @ 1,164ppm Li from AUD028.
The company says the lithium is located in the lakebed sediments overlying the uranium.
Aurora’s share price has also jumped on the ASX, growing 17.647% to $0.200 as of 11am AWST.
Aurora Energy Metals is an exploration and development company focused on its Aurora Energy Metals Project, located in Oregon in the United States.
The project has a defined uranium mineral resource of 69.3Mt @ 248ppm eU3O8 for 37.9 million pounds of uranium, with known lithium mineralisation in lakebed sediments above and surrounding the deposit.
Aurora’s vision is to supply minerals that are critical to the energy transition.
Images: Aurora Energy Metals Limited