Kincora enlists Earth AI to take closer look at drill targets at Cundumbul Project in NSW

Australian porphyry deposit explorer Kincora Copper (ASX:KCC) has started reconnaissance fieldwork with its exploration alliance partner Earth AI at the Cundumbul Project in New South Wales.

Following a thorough geological research and artificial intelligence (AI) targeting phase, Kincora says Earth AI has started ground truthing fieldwork to confirm and refine the drillhole targeting hypothesis at Cundumbul.

The company says it will seek to leverage Earth AI’s vertically integrated, proprietary AI and machine learning capabilities to generate, fund, and drill test targets.

Speaking to Mining.com.au, Kincora Copper Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and President Sam Spring says the company entered the exploration alliance with Earth AI late last year.

“Earth AI is an artificial intelligence and machine learning group that is based out of New South Wales. They’ve got a field camp in Young, and they’ve been involved with picking up a few projects and doing a couple of deals similar to ours, where effectively they take the available project, and regional level data and feed that into their proprietary systems to identify targets, which they did as part of their initial due diligence on our Cundumbul Project.

“I guess the next step, once they identify targets and secure ground, they go out and ground truth those targets which is the stage we’re at with them now”

I guess the next step, once they identify targets and secure ground, they go out and ground truth those targets which is the stage we’re at with them now. Before then, looking to confirm their hypothesis, update their models, make sure that the artificial intelligence, and the geology and tying and sort of refine and upgrade their confidence on those targets before drilling them.”

Earth AI is a San Francisco-headquartered AI company that has a vertically integrated metals exploration approach to targeting, testing and verifying discoveries that are required for the electric vehicle and renewable energy revolutions. Earth AI has an in-house geological team, proprietary mineral exploration AI predictive technology, supported by boots on the ground field assessment approach and an in-house drilling department. 

Earth AI seeks to efficiently reduce the lead-time and cost to discovery, with drilling utilising its Mobile Low Disturbance (MLD) diamond rig and associated proprietary equipment. Earth AI’s NSW field base is located in Young.

Spring says the exploration alliance allows for a 50:50 co-funding model and joint technical committee where Earth AI will have day-to-day management and control of exploration activities, and will contribute up to $4.5 million of total exploration expenditure across the project over a 2-year period with an option to extend for a further year.

Subject to a minimum of 1,500m of diamond drilling and a qualifying drill intersection resulting in a new discovery, Earth AI is entitled to a net smelter return royalty of up to 3% in connection with a to be agreed upon area surrounding the discovery.

The CEO tells Mining.com.au the exploration alliance means Earth AI generates and funds targets for Kincora, and will seek to drill them in what is essentially a success-based alliance that only upon a new discovery does Earth AI obtain a royalty.

“So it’s one of those that you have the project being advanced by a really interesting group with sort of leading edge technology, and I guess we’ll learn a fair bit about what that AI process means as part of the journey”

“So it’s one of those that you have the project being advanced by a really interesting group with sort of leading edge technology, and I guess we’ll learn a fair bit about what that AI process means as part of the journey.”

The Cundumbul Project is in the central Molong volcanic belt of the Macquarie Arc within the Lachlan Fold Belt in Central West New South Wales. The project is about 30km south of Alkane Resources (ASX:ALK) Northern Molong Porphyry Project, 25km north of Copper Hill, and 70km north of the Cadia mine.

Kincora says previous exploration at the project has included mapping, soil sampling, rock chip sampling, induced polarisation (IP), gravity, and magnetic geophysical surveying, with more limited follow-up auger, reverse circulation (RC), and diamond drilling.

Commenting on the company’s current exploration activities, Spring adds to this news service that work is ongoing at the Trundle Project.

“We’re drilling at Trundle, and we’ve got a pipeline of 13 copper-gold targets in our own right that we’re looking to drill across 5 projects at the moment. We’ve put out our first assay results for Trundle and a second update due pretty shortly. It’s nice to have another sort of project in the portfolio that’s being pushed forward, but there’s already 13 targets in the pipeline that are at the discovery stage that we should have a pretty active news flow pipeline for.”

Earth AI is an AI company based in San Francisco that has a vertically integrated metals exploration approach to targeting, testing, and verifying discoveries that are required for the electric vehicle and renewable energy revolutions.

The company has an in-house geology team, proprietary mineral exploration AI predictive technology, supported by boots on the ground field assessment approach, and an in-house drilling team.

Earth AI says it seeks to efficiently reduce the lead time and cost to discovery, with drilling utilising its Mobile Low Disturbance (MLD) diamond rig and associated proprietary equipment.

Kincora Copper is an Australian exploration company aiming to become the leading pure play porphyry explorer. The company’s portfolio includes a range of projects in New South Wales such as the Trundle, Fairholme, Condobolin, Northern Junee-Narromine Belt, Cundumbul, and Macquarie Arc projects, as well as the Southern Gobi Belt Project in Mongolia.

Images: Kincora Copper Ltd
Written By Harry Mulholland
Hailing from the Central Coast region of NSW, Harry is a passionate journalist with a background in print, radio and ESG news. When not bashing away on his keyboard, he can be found brewing a coffee or playing with his dog.