WA1 Resources’ maiden drill run at West Arunta done; assays pending, early evidence promising

Thu 18 Aug 22, 11:03am (AEDT)
A drill rig in the Australian outback
Source: iStock

Key Points

  • WA1 Resources now awaiting return of assay data from first drill run at West Arunta prospective for iron ore, copper, gold
  • Early visual observations suggest promising signs: management
  • Once assays are returned, WA1 Resources will carry out more fieldwork before fresh drilling

WA1 Resources’ (ASX:WA1) first ever drill run at its flagship West Arunta project has concluded with early visual observations of cores collected suggesting the right conditions for iron-ore-copper-gold (IOCG) style mineralisation. 

The drill program came on the back of a $0.15m grant from the WA government for the company to launch the rigs at the Pachpadra and Luni prospects, both within the West Arunta project envelope. Drilling kicked off mid-July. 

The Luni prospect, which itself is a sub-target at the larger Sambhar prospect, was originally identified in an airborne survey as a strong contender for boasting gold.

3-hole program at Luni 

The Luni prospect saw three holes sunk by an RC drill rig for a total of 803m.

All three holes were successful in that all three holes exhibited evidence of iron-oxide alteration in rock samples collected, which are typically associated with sulphide mineralisation. 

While all holes hit the surface of an underground anomaly identified in an airborne survey, the company notes further work will be needed to determine absolutely whether geotechnical signals are strong enough to warrant future drilling. 

Four holes for Pachpadra 

The Pachpadra prospect, meanwhile, saw four drillholes sunk on-site for 942m of core samples across two separate drilling zones, called P1 and P2. 

Three holes drilled at P1 intersected geology suggestive of an underground iron rich mineral system with magnetic qualities. 

P2, meanwhile, saw one hole sunk for 216m targeting the eastern portion of an anomaly identified in July’s airborne survey. 

More data needed

Like the Luni prospect, however, shareholders will need to wait for more comprehensive geotech results from Pachpadra before knowing whether the company will move ahead with more substantial drilling. 

Once assay results are returned for the core samples collected in the now-complete maiden RC drill run on-site, the company will return to to its Arunta acreage to carry out more fieldwork towards the prioritisation of future drilling targets.

Rockchip samples collected from material extracted from the RC drillhole LURC001 targeting the Luni prospect. Management says visual observation of hematite alteration from 181-220m gives early evidence supporting possible IOCG mineralisation.
Materials collected from RC drillhole LURC001, targeting the Luni prospect. Management says visual observation of hematite alteration from 181-220m gives early evidence supporting possible IOCG mineralisation.

Arunta a flagship asset for WA1 

The company’s Arunta acreage, some 500km south of Halls Creek, is in a relatively underexplored part of WA’s interior and directly adjacent permits held in part by Rio Tinto (ASX:RIO).

Back in April, the company picked up two new WA exploration licences, expanding the overall footprint of the Arunta project. It is believed gold mineralisation is present on-site at a number of prospects, not just Luni. 

Earlier rock chip sample collection across Arunta provided evidence of rare earth mineralisation in Pachpadra’s P1 target. At that same location, evidence of copper and nickel was found in five samples taken from nearby accessible ironstone on-site. 

It’s worth noting copper and nickel are increasingly landing on investors’ radars for market opportunities related to the inclusion of both materials in batteries.

While lithium and graphite may be required for EV batteries, for instance, the amount of copper and nickel in an EV battery far outweighs that of lithium.

Disclaimer: Market Index helps small-cap ASX listed companies connect with Australian investors through clear and concise articles on key developments. WA1 Resources was a client at the time of publishing. All coverage contains factual information only and should not be interpreted as an opinion or financial advice.


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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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