Resource extension drilling extends gold footprint at Alice Queen’s Horn Island project

by Leena Thomas
Image: Alice Queen Limited

Alice Queen Limited (ASX: AQX) announced that multiple gold intercepts were returned from its recent resource extension drilling to the existing Horn Island Inferred Resource at the Horn Island project in Queensland.

The company reported that six diamond drill holes were completed to test an approximate strike length of 230m, and all drill holes returned zones of gold mineralisation (>0.5g/t Au). AQX said that the furthest intercept was located approximately 100m south and down dip from the previous drilling which informs the current Horn Island Inferred Resource.

Alice Queen said that the drilling tested a section of the Tatooine Dipole Dipole Induced Polarisation (DDIP) chargeability target and indicated that this anomaly is associated with mineralised gold bearing sheeted and stockwork veining.

AQX said that mineralisation remains open towards the south and northwest, coincidental with the overall trend of the Tatooine DDIP CHG anomaly, and covers a total area of ~ 1km2.

Alice Queen reported that the St Barbara JV diamond drilling program is now in progress across the section of the Tatooine DDIP anomaly contained within the JV and will shortly commence at the Naboo DDIP Target. The company said that the infill RC drilling at the current Horn Island Inferred Resource excluded area will commence at Horn Island in late November to progress resource definition activity.

Horn Island project

The Horn Island project is located 17km off Queensland’s coast in the Torres Strait, just south of Papua New Guinea.

Alice Queen had entered into a JV with Australian listed mid-tier gold producer, St Barbara Limited. Under its JV, SBM is spending $4.0m over three years to earn 70% of areas outside of the Excluded Zones at Horn Island. SBM achieved the Year 1 minimum expenditure requirement of $500,000 in February 2020 and has committed $2m for Year 2 exploration expenditure.

The Horn Island Resource forms part of the excluded areas from the Joint Venture Agreement with St Barbara Limited. St Barbara has an option to purchase all, or part, of the areas excluded from the St Barbara JV.

The mineral resource estimate (inferred) for the Horn Island gold deposit stands at 7.96Mt at 1.9g/t gold for 492,000 ounces of gold using a 0.5g/t gold cutoff grade. Horn Island hosts a 35km mineral field that has been mapped and sampled.

Geology of the Horn Island Gold Project comprises comagmatic extrusive volcanic rocks and I-type intrusive rocks (with a range of recognisable textural and mineralogical phases) of Late Carboniferous to Early Permian age.

Resource extension drilling

AQX had recently commenced resource extension drilling to the existing Horn Island Inferred Resource. Alice Queen completed a diamond drill program comprising six holes, 20NGD087, 20NGD088, 20NGD089, 20NGD090, 20NGD091, and 20NGD092, for a total of 1,356m to test a total strike length of 230m of the Tatooine DDIP chargeability target.

Multiple gold intercepts returned

The company announced that all assays returned from the DD program demonstrated zones of gold mineralisation (>0.5g/t Au) with the furthest intercept located approximately 100m south and down dip from the previous drilling.

Best gold intercepts from recent diamond drilling are noted below.

AQX said that the results confirmed that this Dipole Dipole Induced Polarisation (DDIP) chargeability anomaly is associated with mineralised gold bearing sheeted and stockwork veining, these being similar in nature to the mineralised vein styles forming the Horn Island Inferred Resource (~0.5Moz Au JORC inferred.)

The company said that the mineralisation remains open towards the south and northwest, coincidental with the overall trend of the Tatooine DDIP CHG anomaly which extends into the St Barbara JV area.

Updates and next steps

Alice Queen said that the St Barbara JV diamond drilling program is now in progress across the section of the Tatooine DDIP anomaly contained within the JV. The company said that following this, drilling will commence at the Naboo DDIP Target also contained within the JV area.

Alice Queen said that it intends to commence infill RC drilling at the current resource at Horn Island in late November to progress resource definition activity.

AQX said that further work includes processing of PQ dia. diamond drill core for Tomra Ore Sorter Trial Test work; a ~5000m RC drilling program to improve the Horn Island resource estimate, scheduled for this November; and AQX-SBM JV ~5000m diamond drilling exploration program to test the Tatooine and Naboo DDIP chargeability targets. The company said that this drilling is still in progress and on schedule to be completed in December 2020.

Management comments

Alice Queen’s Managing Director Andrew Buxton said, “It is very encouraging that our recent drilling to test the extensions to our existing resource continues to deliver consistent results and we are hopefully that this may potentially add further tonnes and ounces to our resource in the future.

The extension drilling confirms that the mineralisation remains open towards the south and northwest. This is coincidental with the overall trend of the Tatooine anomaly that extends into the St Barbara JV area.

Simultaneously to Alice Queen carrying out drilling in the “excluded areas” of the JV, St Barbara has also commenced drilling so we are effectively hitting this target from both sides. With future RC infill drilling planned, it is key to remember that the existing Horn Island Inferred Resource could be increased both by volume and ounces from either or both of the two (the exclusive Alice Queen and the St Barbara JV) programs currently being carried out.”