ASX-listed West Wits Mining says the assay results from three diamond holes of a Phase 1 uranium drilling programme at the Witwatersrand Basin project (WBP) underscore the Bird Reef Central area’s potential to be a uranium/gold project.
The objective of the drilling programme was to confirm historical information on the company’s uranium exploration target.
“Phase 1 assay results from the uranium exploration programme have confirmed the potential for Bird Reef Central to be a uranium/gold project. The opportunity is significant as it may allow for uranium to be mined concurrently with the gold-bearing reefs within the Bird Reef Sequence.
“The results provide confidence in the board’s strategy to advance uranium exploration at the WBP with the aim to convert the significant uranium exploration target to a Joint Ore Reserves Committee (Jorc) mineral resource estimate,” West Wits CEO Jac van Heerden says.
West Wits successfully completed the first phase of its uranium drilling programme at the WBP on the exploration target.
The company says it is highly encouraged by the grades and widths of the intercept results which confirm consistent uranium mineralisation over about 3.3 km of the identified strike along the WBP’s Bird Reef Central area, which includes the Monarch reef, Middle Monarch reef and White reef zones.
West Wits has identified a potential strike of more than 7 km along the targeted Bird Reef Sequence within the broader WBP mining right area.
This phase of in-fill drilling was designed to focus on the drilling of three holes at shallow depths (<120 m below surface) in known areas of mineralisation.
The drilling programme comprised three diamond drilled holes with a total of 291.3 m. All three drillholes intersected the complete Monarch and White Reef Sequence between depths of 54 m to 106 m below surface.
Uranium and gold assays were performed by ALS Laboratory Services, in Johannesburg.
A quality assurance programme formed part of the drilling, sampling and assay programme.
Work continued to identify zones of anomalous uranium mineralisation within the previously defined exploration target area.
The style of mineralisation conforms with regional historical trends in being located within conglomerate zones of the Bird Reef Sequence.
In places, mineralisation is often contained within the basal unit of the Bird Reef Sequence also containing concentrations of gold, which presents the potential for dual uranium and gold extraction scenarios.
The White reef, in particular, also contains a variable amount of gold mineralisation.
The information presently in hand is insufficient to undertake mineral resource estimation modelling.
However, the results justify advancing the next phases of work focussed on arriving at Jorc 2012 levels of confidence.
The results from the three drillholes confidently confirm continued uranium mineralisation located in the Bird reef stratigraphy area. Further exploration will flesh out an improved geological understanding of the various zones of mineralisation, their lateral continuity and will also serve to upgrade mineral resource confidence levels.
The current results underpin the company’s uranium strategy and allow for West Wits to prepare a detailed Phase 2 in-fill drilling schedule aimed at delineating a potential Jorc-compliant inferred mineral resource.
A final decision to proceed with Phase 2 will be evaluated.
The company says it also remains keen to test mineralisation at greater depths in its Phase 3 exploration programme.