TORONTO – Arizona Sonoran Copper Company Inc. [ASCU-TSX] reported assays from two drill holes (1,133.5 metres/3,718.9 feet) in the Cactus East deposit as part of a 9,144-metre (30,000 ft) prefeasibility study (PFS) infill-to-indicated drilling program at the 100%-owned Cactus Mine project, 40 miles (64 km) southeast of the Phoenix, Arizona. Drilling targeted the oxide material along the periphery of the Cactus East preliminary economic assessment (PEA) underground mine plan, defining mineralization toward the East fault and gathering an understanding of the geometry of the fault.
Hole ECE-021, extended mineralization 61 metres (200 ft) east of the current mineral resource shell and is one the best oxide intercepts ever drilled at the Cactus project. The drill intercept of leachable material is considerably thicker and higher grade than predicted in the area at 99.1 metres (325 ft) at 1.28% copper TSol (total soluble) versus 48.8 metres (160 ft) at 0.54% copper TSol. Mineralization is open 122 metres (400 ft) north, toward the northwest-trending East fault. Follow-up drilling will be conducted to confirm the continuity of the high-grade zone to the north and east adjacent to the East fault.
The drilling demonstrates continuous leachable mineralization including extensions outward from the mineral resource pit shell by at least 61 metres (200 ft). Drill hole ECE-021 returned 1.4% copper TSol over 80.9 metres (266 ft) of oxide mineralization, including 2.21% copper TSol over 27.2 metres (89 ft). Hole ECE-020 returned 0.50% copper TSol over 100.9 metres (331 ft) of oxide mineralization.
George Ogilvie, president and CEO, commented: “The infill drilling to indicated mineral resource classification is a key program as we move towards the prefeasibility study, expected in mid-2022, and will underpin all future engineering work at Cactus. The initial high-grade oxide results are providing improved data points for the upcoming PFS, while also confirming that grades improve towards the East fault.”
A total of 265 holes for 72,255 metres (237,057 ft) have now been drilled into the Cactus West and East deposit. Since 2019, the company has drilled 127 of those holes for 30,468 m (99,959 ft). Forty-nine holes for 26,730 metres (87,698 ft) have been drilled into Cactus East.
The Cactus East underground oxide and enriched mineral resource contains 146 million pounds of copper at 0.95% TSol in the Indicated category and 315 million pounds of copper at 0.88% TSol in the Inferred category; any new drilling data will be used to support the PFS expected mid-2022.