Southern Palladium announces 39% UG2 mineral resource increase

Southern Palladium MD Johan Odendaal

Southern Palladium MD Johan Odendaal

30th May 2023

By: Darren Parker

Creamer Media Contributing Editor Online


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ASX- and JSE-listed Southern Palladium has announced a substantial 39% increase in the upper group two (UG2) mineral resource at its Bengwenyama platinum group metals (PGMs) project, located on the eastern limb of the Bushveld Complex in South Africa.

The company reported on May 30 that the 39% increase took the total UG2 mineral resource on a three platinum group element plus gold (3PGE+Au) or four element (4E) basis from 8.38-million ounces to 11.65-million ounces.

Additionally, a maiden resource of 14.13-million ounces has been established on a six platinum group element plus gold (6PGE+Au) or seven-element (7E) basis, further solidifying the project's potential and prospects, the company said.

Further, the latest update revealed that 2.56-million ounces of the UG2 reef have been successfully converted into an indicated mineral resource. The converted resource boasts a 4E grade of 7.65 g/t, in line with previous grade expectations, while a 7E grade of 9.24 g/t has been achieved.

“The rate of conversion of inferred to indicated is high. We have also been very pleased with the Far East Block discovery, which has contributed a significant upgrade to the resource base. This takes us a step closer to reaching our first milestone target of a two-million-ounce reserve," Southern Palladium MD Johan Odendaal said.

The project's UG2 three-dimensional geological model has also undergone an update, shedding light on the structure of the eastern area. The findings suggest that the eastern region is less structurally complex than initially anticipated, potentially streamlining future operations.

Looking ahead, drilling activities at the Bengwenyama project will continue, with plans to introduce a sixth drill rig on-site by July. This addition aims to bolster monthly drill metres, enhancing exploration efforts and data collection.

The deployment of the sixth drill rig holds strategic significance as it will facilitate investigations into a second entry point. This exploration will aid in expediting the production ramp-up process and is expected to be incorporated into an updated scoping study.

Southern Palladium also announced that the project's mining right application is progressing as planned and is on track for submission in the third quarter. This timeline is five months ahead of the original schedule.

“The immediate aim is to convert more of the resource from inferred to indicated on the shallow eastern portion, known as the Payback Area Block, so we can reach an acceptable confidence level in our prefeasibility cashflow model. The updated structural model provides a valuable insight into locating where the most feasible underground access areas are on the eastern portion of the orebody,” Odendaal said.

With the company’s knowledge of the area of the orebody now well-established, one drilling rig will move to the western portion of the Eerstegeluk farm in the coming months to gain a better understanding of the uplifted Horst Block area, he added.

Edited by Chanel de Bruyn
Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor Online



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