Mineral exploration company Kingfisher Mining (ASX:KFM) has confirmed the discovery of new ‘high-grade’ continuous rare earth element (REE) mineralisation at MW2, located within the Mick Well Project in Western Australia.
The company says REE mineralisation was uncovered through drilling which was targeting REE mineralisation identified in an ongoing surface mapping and sampling program.
The mineralisation targeted in the current program is located 500m northwest of Kingfisher’s initial discovery drilling in the MW2 area, where previously reported ‘high-grade’ results included 5m @ 3.45% total rare earth oxides (TREO), including 3m @ 5.21% TREO, as well as 12m @ 1.12% TREO, with 4m @ 1.84% TREO.
“The latest drill results have confirmed continuous high-grade rare earth elements across the entire strike length of the drilled target”
Kingfisher reports drilling at MW2 was completed in November and December 2022, with 37 holes completed for about 4,225m. All of the assay results from this latest drilling have been returned, with numerous ‘significant’ results confirming the discovery of new ‘high-grade’ REE mineralisation at MW2.
‘Significant’ results include MWRC062 with 1m @ 3.34% TREO and 0.71% neodymium-praseodymium (Nd2O3-Pr6O11) from 108m; MWRC035 with 4m @ 3.24% TREO and 0.54% Nd2O3-Pr6O11 from 46m; and MWRC067 with 5m @ 2.63% TREO and 0.54% Nd2O3-Pr6O11 from 124m, including 3m @ 4.11% TREO and 0.85% Nd2O3-Pr6O11 from 124m.
Commenting on the drill results, Kingfisher Mining Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) James Farrell said: “The latest drill results have confirmed continuous high-grade rare earth elements across the entire strike length of the drilled target and significantly, the target mineralisation remains open along strike and at depth.
This is a great outcome and follows on from the initial discovery of outcropping mineralisation at MW2 just 6 months ago, and it is only 12 months since our initial breakthrough REE discovery in the Mick Well area.
The results confirm the Chalba Shear as the next large-scale REE target zone in the Gascoyne, which is a separate parallel shear approximately 100km south of the Lyons River Shear that hosts Hastings’ (Hastings Technology Metals) (ASX:HAS) world-class Yangibana Project that is currently under construction and the exciting REE discoveries by Dreadnought Resources (ASX:DRE) at their Mangaroon Project.
Significantly, MW2 is only one of many identified targets along the company’s extensive 54km Chalba corridor and there is potential for additional mineralisation discoveries and growth for the company as our methodical exploration advances further along the shear.”
The company says the MW2 mineralisation occurs in 5 separate lodes, with ‘high’ REE grades distributed across the entire strike length of the mineralisation drilled in the current program. The ‘high-grade’ REE mineralisation outcrops at surface, with the deepest mineralisation so far being intersected at a vertical depth of about 115m.
Additionally, the ‘highest’ grade mineralisation remains open along strike and at depth, and consists predominantly of monazite, which the company notes is an important host for magnet REEs, neodymium, and praseodymium. This mineralisation is also low in thorium (Th), with less than 200 parts per million (ppm) Th for the reported mineralisation intervals.
Kingfisher says the latest MW2 drilling program builds on the company’s developing geological understanding of the REE mineralisation at Mick Well, and along the entire length of the company’s 54km Chalba REE mineralisation corridor. The mineralisation intersected in drilling at MW2 occurs dominantly at veins within the faults and shears.
The company interprets the source of the vein mineralisation to be the intrusion of carbonatite pipes or plugs, and interpretation that is consistent with the carbonatite mineralisation exploration model.
The highest grade and thickest mineralisation intersected in the current drill program was also largely unseen at surface, with a thin veneer of cover masking the underlying geology.
Kingfisher says this is a ‘significant’ opportunity for the company with the potential to extend the mineralisation in all directions, particularly towards the southwest, where the company’s mapping work is limited.
Another key outcome from the drilling program was the recognition of ‘strongly’ magnetic mineralisation. The company’s airborne geophysics shows many northeast-striking magnetic anomalies which directly extend from the MW2 mineralisation. Each of these magnetic features is a ‘high-priority’ target for follow-up exploration around the MW2 discovery.
In addition to the vein and dyke-style REE mineralisation, Kingfisher is also developing exploration targets and work programs to assess potentially larger-scale REE mineralisation associated with carbonatite plugs, with many targets already recognised along the Chalba mineralisation corridor as well as along the parallel 30km strike length of the Lockier zone.
Kingfisher Mining is a mineral exploration company that holds the Gascoyne Mineral Field Project, and the Ashburton Mineral Field in Western Australia.