Metal explorer and developer Power Metal Resources (Power Metal) has completed most elements of the follow-up programme at the Kisinka project in the Democratic Republic of Congo, including pitting and mapping.
Laboratory analysis will, however, only be possible after air cargo routes reopen.
The programme, launched earlier this year, is focussed on a target area containing a 6.8-km-wide copper anomaly.
Power Metal reports that the hardness of the material encountered during the pitting process, and late rainfall, caused some delay to completion of the programme, although overall it accomplished its goals.
In total, 21 pits totalling 174.3 m were dug on nine cross-sections across the target area for copper, with 16 reaching target depth and five stopping in the lateritic overburden at around 6 m as a result of water table contact.
From the pits, 209 channel samples of 2 kg each were taken, including three samples from the bottom-end bedrock in certain pits, and including 11 quality assurance/quality control duplicate samples.
After preparation at the preparation laboratory of the University of Lubumbashi, samples were prepared and subjected to X-ray fluorescence (XRF) testing at the Minex Consulting offices together with the duplicates.
Two certified reference material samples of oxidised carbonate rocks containing cobalt and copper were tested and performance of the XRF analysis fell within the standard deviation limits.
Meanwhile, Power Metal notes that, in addition to the 16 pits that reached target depth, five pits stopped in the lateritic cover, while three pits were left for possible later completion when conditions are drier. Progress was slowed by the hardness of the massive haematitic ironstone intercepted in some pits, as well as by the water ingress.
Traces of malachite copper ore in replacement mode were observed in one pit. The addition of results from the pitting and XRF testing to the data from previous programmes has resulted in an enlargement of the mapped copper anomalous zone.
Power Metal CEO Paul Johnson says the confirmation, and in fact enlargement, of the copper anomalous areas detected in previous exploration enables the company now to go forward with confidence.
“The laterisation and leaching that we encountered support the theory that there may be supergene enriched mineralisation at a lower level, so we particularly want to investigate this.”
Further, he notes that the presence of cobalt partly correlated with the copper is another positive indication. “After confirmation from the inductively coupled plasma analysis, which we may extend to include samples from the earlier termite mound sampling, we will release the data on cobalt and copper levels in the anomalies.”
“We were able to relate some mineralisation areas to structures and faulting, and to build on that work and generate the best drill targets we will need to carry out some geophysics.”