Nickel North Announces Significant Mineral Resource Update at Hawk Ridge Nickel-Copper-Cobalt-PGE Project, Resources Increase 76.6% to 34.66 Mt Nickel 0.22% Copper 0.56% and more
Vancouver, British Columbia--(Newsfile Corp. - July 5, 2022) - Nickel North Exploration Corp. (TSXV: NNX) (" Nickel North" or the "Company") today announced an updated Mineral Resource Estimate ("MRE") for its 100% owned Hawk Ridge Nickel-Nickel-Cobalt-PGE Sulphide Project ("Hawk Ridge") in Northern Québec. The NI-43-101 Inferred MRE increased by 76.6% to 34.66 Mt from 19.63 Mt and includes an update on its previously reported Hope Advance Main ("HAM") Zone and Hope Advance North ("HAN"), Gamma and Falco 7 Deposits.
Total Inferred Mineral Resources for four mineralized deposits (Hope Advance Main (HAM), Hope Advance North (HAN), Gamma and Falco 7) increase by 76.6% to 34.66 Mt at 0.22%, 0.56% Cu, 0.013% Co, 0.19 g/t Pd, 0.05 g/t Pt and 0.025 g/t Au (Table 1), which includes:
Total Pit-Constrained Inferred Mineral Resources at a CDN$35/t NSR cut-off increase by 50% to 29.44 Mt at 0.20% Ni, 0.52% Cu, 0.012% Co, 0.19 g/t Pd, 0.04 g/t Pt and 0.021 g/t Au, which equates to 0.56% NiEq.
Total Out-Of-Pit (Underground) Inferred Mineral Resources at a CDN$100/t NSR cut-off are estimated at 5.22 Mt at average grades of 0.35% Ni, 0.79% Cu, 0.014% Co, 0.23 g/t Pd, 0.06 g/t Pt, and 0.04 g/t Au, which equates to 0.88% NiEq.
The higher-grade "Raglan Type" sulphide mineralization exists in all four reported nickel-copper sulphide deposits and all of them remain open along strike and down-dip (Figure 2-4); Hawk Ridge has a similar rock age/type and is part of the same Circum-Superior nickel belt, and lastly same occurrences of Ni-Cu & PGE metals found (Figure 1).
To view an enhanced version of Figure 1, please visit:
Figure 1, Comparison Diagram of Glencore's Raglan project and NNX's Hawk Ridge Project
Significant exploration potential remains with approximately 50% of the Hawk Ridge mineralized structure and mineral occurrences being undrilled or untested and will soon be actively explored (Figure 5).
Tony Guo, President and CEO of Nickel North commented, "This Mineral Resource update delivers on both of its key objectives - better definition and increased the Pit-Constrained Mineral Resource and establishing an initial Mineral Resource for potential underground mining. With a 76.6% increase in total Inferred Mineral Resources, and an initial Out-of-Pit Mineral Resource, this update puts NNX in excellent position for the planning the next large drilling program to further define both high grade Out-of-Pit targets and expanding the Pit-Constrained Mineral Resources in the late 2022 to summer 2023 working seasons.
"Note that the Mineral Resource Estimate is based on drilling up to 2014 and there has been no drilling since then, with over 50 kilometers of north-south strike length. The entire Hawk Ridge land package is open for exploration and only a fraction of it included in this Mineral Resource Estimate. (Figure 5)
"I look forward to the 2022 summer surface exploration program and 2023 drilling program to explore our several highly prospective nickel-copper-cobalt-PGM targets at Hawk Ridge, and to completing further mineral and metallurgical testing for the Hawk Ridge."
Nickel North Mineral Resource Estimate Update
For this update to the 2013 initial Mineral Resource Estimate, two drill holes (HR2014-49 and HR2014-50) completed in late-2014 were added to the original 2013 database, for a total of 37,262 m drilled. A sampling and mineral characteristic study was completed in 2014 by XPS Consulting and Testwork Service (www.xps.ca), a Glencore company. The results of the study were utilized to calculate the Mineral Resources in the four deposits as provided in Table 1 below. The Pit-Constrained Inferred Mineral Resources of 29.44 Mt grading 0.20% Ni, 0.52% Cu, 0.012% Co, 0.19 g/t Pd, 0.04 g/t Pt and 0.021 g/t Au, which equates to a 0.56% NiEq and Out-Pit Inferred Mineral Resources of 5.22 Mt at average grades of 0.35% Ni, 0.79% Cu, 0.014% Co, 0.06 g/t Pt, 0.23 g/t Pd and 0.04 g/t Au, which equates to a 0.88% NiEq. An NSR cut-off of CDN$35/t was used for Pit-Constrained Mineral Resource reporting and an NSR cut-off of CDN$100/t for the higher-grade Out-of-Pit Mineral Resource reporting. Example block model views of the Mineral Resource Estimate are provided in Figures 2 to 4 below. The drilling programs were conducted from the 1960s to 2014. This Mineral Resource Estimate was prepared by P&E Mining Consultants Inc. in accordance with 2014 CIM Definition Standards on Mineral Resources and Reserves and 2019 CIM Best Practices Guidelines. A Technical Report in support of the Mineral Resource Estimate will be filed on SEDAR (www.sedar.com) within 45 days of this news release.
The Mineral Resource Estimate is effective as of May 31, 2022.
Table 1 - Updated Total Inferred Mineral Resource Estimate for the Hawk Ridge Nickel-Copper-Cobalt-PGE Sulphide Project, North Québec
|HAM & HAN||Subtotal||35+100||16,215||0.58||94,246||0.21||33,242||0.04||23,017||0.19||98,146||0.011||1,723||0.014||7,469||8.70|
|HAM, HAN, Falco 7 & Gamma||Pit|
- CIM definitions (2014) and Best Practices Guidelines (2019) were followed for Mineral Resource estimation
- Mineral Resources were estimated by conventional 3-D block modelling based on wireframing at a CDN$35/tonne NSR cut-off for Pit-Constrained Mineral Resources and a CDN$100/tonne NSR cut-off for Out-of-Pit Mineral Resources using inverse distance squared grade interpolation.
- Metal prices for the estimate are: US$4.00/lb Cu, US$9.25/lb Ni, US$1,350/oz Pt, US$1800/oz Pd, US$1,750/oz Au and US$26.00/lb Co based on a two-year trailing average as of May 31, 2022, along with Consensus Economics metal price forecasting.
- A variable bulk density of 3.01 tonnes/m3 or greater has been applied for volume to tonnes conversion.
- - Pit-Constrained Mineral Resources are estimated from surface to pit floor depths of 100 m to 230 m.
- Out-of-Pit Mineral Resources are estimated from 100 m to 275 m below pit floors
- Mineral Resources are classified as Inferred based on drill hole spacing, geologic continuity and quality of data.
- Mineral Resources which are not Mineral Reserves do not have demonstrated economic viability. The estimate of Mineral Resources may be materially affected by environmental, permitting, legal, title, taxation, socio-political, marketing, or other relevant issues.
- The Inferred Mineral Resource in this estimate has a lower level of confidence that applied to an Indicated Mineral Resource and must not be converted to a Mineral Reserve. It is reasonably expected that the majority of the Inferred Mineral Resource could be upgraded to an Indicated Mineral Resource with continued exploration.
Figure 2, Block Model for Hope Advance Main (HAM) and North (HAN) Zone with variable CDN$/t NSR cut-offs, Top part (Blue colour), Pit-Constrained Mineral Resource block models; Lower part, High-grade mineralization "potato" with & NSR > CDN$100/t within large, low-grade mineralized zone (NSR > CDN$35/t)
To view an enhanced version of Figure 2, please visit:
Figure 3, Block Model for Gamma Zone with variable CDN$/t NSR cut-offs, Top part (Blue colour), Pit-Constrained Mineral Resource block models; Lower part, High-grade mineralization "potato" with an NSR >CDN$100/t within large low-grade mineralized zone(NSR >CDN$35/t)
To view an enhanced version of Figure 3, please visit:
Figure 4, Block Model for Falco 7 Zone with variable CDN$/t NSR cut-offs, Top part (Blue colour), Pit-Constrained Mineral Resource block models; Lower part, High-grade mineralization "potato" with an NSR >CDN$100/t within large low-grade mineralized zone (NSR >CDN$35/t)
To view an enhanced version of Figure 4, please visit:
To view an enhanced version of Figure 5, please visit:
The Cu, Ni, Co, Pt, Pd, and Au mineralization lies at or near surface and is potentially amenable to low strip ratio, open-pit mining. The mineralized wireframes for the four deposits were constructed based on host rock lithology and mineralization at an open pit operating cut-off Net Smelter Return ("NSR") of CDN$35/t as calculated by P&E. The NSR calculation was based on a two-year trailing average metal prices and Consensus Economics metal price forecasts as of May 31, 2022, metal recoveries and smelter payable metal and treatment costs generalized from other P&E projects and a US exchange rate at 0.78. One-metre composites were generated from the assays captured within each deposit wireframe. The Mineral Resources were all classified as Inferred based on the wide drill hole spacing, level of assaying and geologic confidence in grade continuity.
The Hopes Advance North and Main Deposits have been considered, and reported, as one domain (Hopes Advance). The geologically similar Gamma Deposit occurs 15.5 km to the southeast in a similar stratigraphic setting as the above. The Falco 7 Deposit is 11.4 km north-northeast of this trend. All deposits have strikingly similar geology and styles of mineralization. Mineral Resources for each deposit were estimated individually using Inverse Distance Squared (1/D2) weighting of composited assay values. The drill-hole database for the Property contains 407 diamond drill holes totalling 37,262 m, of which 88 drill holes for 15,268 m have been utilized to delineate the Mineral Resources. The spacing of the drill-hole sections in the individual deposit areas ranges from 50 m to 200 m.
The mineral deposits contain an additional Exploration Target with a potential range of 35 million tonnes to 60 million tonnes at grade ranges of 0.35% to 0.40% Cu, 0.10% to 0.20% Ni, 0.01% to 0.02% Co, 0.03 g/t to 0.05 g/t Pt, 0.15 g/t to 0.20 g/t Pd, and 0.03 g/t to 0.05 g/t Au, which equates to a 0.35% to 0.55% NiEq.
The Exploration Target is based on the estimated strike length, depth and width of the known mineralization, which is supported by intermittent drill-holes, geophysics and observations of mineralized surface exposures. The potential quantities and grades of this Exploration Target are conceptual in nature. There has been insufficient work done by a Qualified Person to define these estimates as Mineral Resources. The Company is not treating these estimates as Mineral Resources, and readers should not place undue reliance on these estimates. Even with additional work, there is no certainty that these estimates will be classified as Mineral Resources. In addition, there is no certainty that these estimates will prove to be economically recoverable.
All of the deposits within the 50 km long Hawk Ridge Project occur within the northern portion of the New Québec Orogen (Labrador Trough), near the southwest coast of Ungava Bay, Northern Québec. The Hawk Ridge Property is underlain by Proterozoic rocks that unconformably overlie Archean cratonic rocks of the Superior Province that are exposed to the west. The Proterozoic rocks are composed of a thick sequence of marine metasedimentary and mafic metavolcanic rocks that were intruded by mafic and ultramafic sills and dykes. Regionally, these rocks have been thrust to the West onto the Superior Craton and now dip steeply to the east. Disseminated copper-nickel-PGE and gold-bearing sulphides, with narrow high-grade massive sulphide bands, are predominantly hosted in the mafic and to a minor extent by metasedimentary rocks.
Mineral Resources by Deposit are presented in the tables below.
Table 2 Pit-Constrained Inferred Mineral Resources by Deposit at Various NSR Cut-Offs
|NSR Cut-off||Tonnes||Cu ||Cu ||Ni ||Ni||Pt ||Pt||Pd ||Pd||Co ||Co||Au||Au ||Fe|
|15||8,772 ||0.39 ||34,464 ||0.17 ||14,550 ||0.04 ||11,211 ||0.15 ||42,773 ||0.016||1,426||0.023 ||6,420 ||15.33 |
Table 3 Out-of-Pit Inferred Mineral Resources by Deposit at Various NSR Cut-Offs
Quality Assurance and Quality Control
The QA-QC procedures employed by Nickel North were industry standard and included collection of drill core field duplicate samples, insertion of certified reference materials (standards) and blanks, and systematic laboratory inserted certified reference materials, pulp duplicates and client specified sample pulp repeats.
The QA-QC program for Hawk Ridge 2012 to 2014 exploration was set up in advance to ensure the drill program was compliant to industry standards, and to provide the accuracy and precision of the sampling and analytical processes to an acceptable level.
Samples were received at TSL Laboratories Inc., ("TSL"), and sorted and dried prior to preparation. Drill core and rock samples were crushed using a primary jaw crusher to a minimum 70% passing -10 mesh. A 250 g subsample was pulverized to a minimum 95% passing -150 mesh. The precious metals, Au, Pd and Pt were analyzed using lead-collection fire assay with ICP finish at TSL.
Sample pulps were then shipped by commercial air freight directly to ACME Labs in Vancouver, BC for analysis of a 41-element suite, and Ni and Cu were determined by a 4-acid digest at ACME.
TSL Laboratories Inc. ("TSL") is based in Saskatoon, SK and has been in continuous operation since 1981. The TSL quality system conforms to requirements of ISO/IEC Standard 17025 guidelines, and participates in the Proficiency Testing program sponsored by the Canadian Certified Reference Materials Project. The lab has qualified for the Certificates of Laboratory Proficiency since the program's inception in 1997. TSL was recently acquired by Saskatchewan Research Council.
ACME operates 19 offices in 11 countries. At each lab, a quality system compliant with the International Standards Organization (ISO) 9001 Model for Quality Assurance and ISO/IEC 17025 General Requirements for the Competence of Testing and Calibration Laboratories is implemented. The Vancouver laboratory received formal approval of its ISO/IEC 17025:2005 accreditation from the Standards Council of Canada for the tests listed in the approved scope of accreditation.
The technical information in this news release has been prepared in accordance with Canadian regulatory requirements as set out in National Instrument 43-101 and reviewed and approved by Tony Guo, P.Geo., who is a Nickel North's Qualified Person as defined by National Instrument 43-101 ("NI 43-101"). The Mineral Resource Estimate and technical content in this news release have been supervised, reviewed and approved by, Antoine Yassa, P.Geo, OGQ of P&E Mining Consultants Inc. who is independent of Nickel North.
About Nickel North Exploration
Nickel North Exploration is a Canada-based exploration company focused on defining a Ni-Cu-Co-PGE Mineral Resource at its Hawk Ridge Project in Northern Québec. The board of directors, advisor committee and management team are experienced, successful mine finders. The Project consists of a 50 km long belt of strong magmatic Cu-Ni-Co-PGE occurrences covering 173 km2. The Project is located near tidewater. Québec is a mining-friendly jurisdiction. Nickel North Exploration is a conscientious corporate citizen maintains good relations with local Inuit communities and is committed to sustainable development. For more information on the Company, please visit www.nnexploration.com.
Nickel North Exploration Corp. has been identified as a key player in the Critical and Strategic Minerals value chain by Québec's Ministry of Economics and Innovation (MEI) in 2021 (Québec Plan for the Development of Critical and Strategic Minerals 2020-2025 (quebec.ca), which is part of Québec's Plan for the Development of Critical and Strategic Metals (QPDCSM) and aims to stimulate the exploration and mining of SCMs, their transformation and recycling.
Nickel North Exploration Inc.
Tony Guo. P. Geo, Chief Executive Officer (Tel: +1-778-877-5480)
For further information please visit http://www.nnexploration.com
This news release may contain forward-looking information, which is not comprised of historical facts. Forward-looking information involves risks, uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual events, results, performance, prospects and opportunities to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking information. Forward-looking information in this news release may include, but is not limited to, the Company's objectives, goals or future plans. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from such forward-looking information include, but are not limited to, those risks set out in the Company's public documents filed on SEDAR. Although the Company believes that the assumptions and factors used in preparing the forward-looking information in this news release are reasonable, undue reliance should not be placed on such information, which only applies as of the date of this news release, and no assurance can be given that such events will occur in the disclosed time frames, or at all. The Company disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking information, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, other than as required by law. Neither TSX Venture exchange nor its Regulations Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.
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