The Ardea WA tenure represents a large strategic land holding in one of Australia’s premier nickel sulphide and gold provinces. Ardea has several additional project mineralisation styles outside of the KNP – Goondgarrie hub goethite. In addition to the other laterite hosted nickel-cobalt opportunities, in 2022, Ardea identified the emerging nickel sulphide camp at Emu Lake, KNP. The discovery of massive nickel-copper-PGE sulphides in the highly underexplored Kurnalpi terrane is very significant. Additionally, Ardea’s tenure also hosts other significant “greenfields” potential for nickel sulphide, LCT, REE and/or gold mineralisation.
Perrinvale nickel sulphide prospect
Perrinvale is located approximately 100km west of Leonora. The Ardea exploration model is based on recent nickel sulphide discoveries immediately west of Perrinvale made by St George Mining. Regional magnetic data highlights that the feature which hosts the St George Mining nickel sulphide discoveries within the Cathedrals Belt, has an east-northeast strike and extends into Perrinvale. At Perrinvale, this prospective trend is overlain by transported cover, requiring geophysical methods such as moving loop Electro Magnetic (MLEM) surveys for exploration targeting.
MLEM surveys have been completed by Ardea over three separate zones at Perrinvale with a consultant’s field report received during the December 2019 Quarter which recommended follow-up exploration including shallow aircore drilling beneath transported cover to determine basement geology and the geochemical signature associated with the EM anomalies defined. Surface EM surveys were recommended over the areas not covered by the initial trial survey.
Mt Zephyr-Darlot East Red 5 Joint Venture
In November 2020, Ardea executed a Farm-in Joint Venture Agreement with ASX-listed gold producer Red 5 Limited (ASX: RED, Red 5). Red 5 can earn up to an 80% interest in Ardea’s Mt Zephyr and Darlot East Gold Projects, both located in close proximity to the Red 5 Darlot Gold Mine. Under the terms of the Agreement, Red 5, through its 100%-owned subsidiary, Darlot Mining Company Pty Ltd (Darlot), has executed a Farm-in Joint Venture Agreement (Agreement) with Ardea Exploration Pty Ltd, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Ardea Resources Ltd, over the Mt Zephyr and Darlot East Gold Projects in Western Australia. (ASX Announcement, 19 November 2020)
Mt Zephyr contains both primary gold and nickel mineralisation and encapsulates more than two thirds of an underexplored greenstone belt called Celia Lineament. The area east of the Celia Lineament is considered highly prospective for the following reasons:
- All historic gold workings east of lineament
- Mt Windarra nickel sulphide stratigraphy
- Jupiter, Wallaby granitoid-hosted gold to the east of the lineament further south
- Along structure from Mt Morgans, Lake Roe gold deposits
- Ardea are the first to test the new geological setting concepts
- First pass drill programs completed
- Gold at Gale, Dunn’s North, Dunn’s Line and Paul’s Find
- Ni-Cu sulphides (+ gold) at Jones Area A
- First-pass, wide-spaced (160mx160m) drilling confirms granite hosted gold mineralisation, at Gale
The Bedonia group of four tenements is to the east of Norseman in the southern Eastern Goldfields. The poorly exposed Bedonia project covers forested country near the southeastern margin of the Eastern Goldfields. Archaean-aged granite and greenstones are cross-cut by Proterozoic mafic dykes, some of which are known to host magmatic Ni-Cu-PGM mineralization. The largest of these, the Jimberlana Dyke, contains several documented mineralized occurrences. Other mineralization known in the area includes orogenic gold mineralization, and potentially secondary lacustrine vanadate deposits (Heartbreak Lignite deposits). Field work confirmed known targets as well as identifying previously undocumented gold workings. Greenstone sequences are evident beneath cover on all tenure at Bedonia.
The presence of lignite previously identified at Bedonia may indicate prospective basins in which REE may have accumulated, with REE mineralisation associated with these deposits elsewhere. A review of internal and external data recommended assessment for ionic clay REE deposits in paleochannels or local lacustrine basins.