Great Southern Mining kicks off Phase I nickel drilling at East Laverton project in WA

Tue 15 Nov 22, 3:11pm (AEST)
In-situ nickel mineralisation
Source: iStock

Key Points

  • Stage 1 drilling for nickel has kicked off at Great Southern’s East Laverton project
  • Company targeting nickel mineralisation as the metal looks set for a bull run in coming years
  • Stage 1 drilling at Diorite Hill prospect to be followed up by second stage drilling in early 2023, after new EM surveys are finalised

Great Southern Mining (ASX:GSN) shareholders have avoided falling into the red today as the company announces its commencement of nickel drilling at its WA-based East Laverton project. 

The company currently has an RC drill rig on the ground at the Diorite Hill target as it chases after anomalies spotted in electromagnetic (EM) surveys earlier this year. 

Two bedrock anomalies will be probed, which the exploration team is hopeful turns up evidence of copper-nickel mineralisation. 

This is only the first stage of drilling at East Laverton, with support coming from the WA state government’s exploration incentive fund in recent weeks. 

Stage two drilling will go after a 17km long target thought to consist of ultramafic rocks, a type of host rock commonly housing nickel and copper deposits, as well as other metals; the second leg of drilling will target the Granite Well and Rotorua prospects, once further EM surveys wind up in early 2023. 

110km² of largely untested acreage: Management 

“Following several months of refinement and target validation, GSN’s team is excited to see the rig arrive at East Laverton to drill the EM conductors within the Diorite Hill Intrusive Complex,” Great Southern MD Matthew Keane said.

“The largely untested intrusive geology of Diorite Hill, coupled with favourable stratigraphic positions of the conductors make for a compelling drill program.”

What is the East Laverton project? 

Great Southern’s East Laverton play boasts a total project area of 405km², which much of that still unexplored by the company. 

The Diorite Hill area being targeted in first stage drilling is a whopping 110km² in size alone. The last exploration conducted by previous operators happened back in 2005, but Great Southern notes much of this focus was looking at gold, and not copper (nor nickel.) 

Located some 15km east of Laverton (thus the name,) the play represents Great Southern’s flagship nickel project, with focus on the rest of the company’s project portfolio centering on copper and gold. 

Worth noting is that copper and nickel are becoming more and more aligned with battery metal supply chain opportunities, as the prominence of the two formerly uninspiring base metals are set to become main characters in the global EV story.

Macquarie Bank expects a nickel deficit to define Australian supply chains before the 2030s. 

A look at Great Southern Mining's six month charts
A look at Great Southern Mining's six month charts


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Written By

Jonathon Davidson

Finance Writer

Jonathon is a journalism graduate and avid market watcher with exposure to governance, NGO and mining environments. He was most recently hired as an oil and gas specialist for a trade publication.

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