A modern day “gold rush” is now underway in the Mio-Pliocene age volcanic arc in northern Chile and Argentina that is driven by new exploration models and technology targeting multi-million ounce high sulfidation epithermal (HSE) oxide gold deposits. In 2012, Mirasol staked a large land package containing nine projects in the newly discovered Gorbea Belt, securing an area with broad prospective alteration systems identified by its generative team. Detailed ground follow-up of these targets identified large outcropping gold systems at the Atlas and Titan projects. These oxide gold systems were not recognized by previous explorers and underscores how Mirasol’s industry-leading approach to exploration methods delivers opportunities for shareholders.
On January 28, 2019, the Company announced that it signed a definitive Letter Agreement for an Option and Farm-in Agreement with a subsidiary of Newcrest Mining Limited (NCM) for the Gorbea gold project in Chile. NCM has the right to acquire, in multiple stages, up to 75% of the Gorbea Project by completing a series of exploration and development milestones and making staged option payments to Mirasol. NCM has also committed to spend a minimum of US$4 million and complete a minimum of 3,000 m of drilling over an initial 18-month period, subject to drill permitting timelines. Upon NCM earning 75% of the Project, Mirasol can elect to fund its share and retain a 25% project equity position, or exercise a one-time equity conversion option to convert up to 10% of its equity into a NSR royalty at a rate of 2.5% equity per 0.5% NSR royalty (max 2% NSR royalty).
The Gorbea belt comprises of nine 100%-owned claim blocks totalling approximately 23,080 ha and includes the Atlas and Titan projects. The Atlas project is centred on a +25 sq. km HSE gold alteration system hosting multiple gold and silver targets. During the three years of the Gorbea JV, Yamana focused its drilling activity exclusively on the Atlas and Titan projects. During the 2017-2018 exploration season, Yamana initiated reconnaissance level surface exploration at the Ventura, Orion and Siro projects.
The best drilling results on the Atlas project were received in 2017 from holes 15 and 16 and include:
114.1 m at 1.07 g/t Au and 1.78 g/t Ag,
including 36 m at 2.49 g/t Au and 3.08 g/t Ag (hole 15)
45.8 m at 0.32 g/t Au and 0.81 g/t Ag (hole 16)
The intersection in hole 15 starts from 347 m down hole. Hole 16 is interpreted to have drilled across the top of this same breccia body.
The drilling at Atlas has outlined gold mineralization in an area of 650 m by 125 m by over a 200 m vertical interval. As currently known, the top of mineralization is located between approximately 255 to 310 m depth beneath altered cap rocks, which is a characteristic in-common with other recent, HSE gold discoveries elsewhere on this same mineral belt in Chile.
Holes 7 and 10 returned the best results from the 2015-16 drill campaign including 40 m at 1.38 g/t Au, with 28 m at 1.82 g/t Au. The mineralization at Atlas is interpreted to be oxidized to depths of more than 400 m downhole. Deep oxidation is considered a positive feature at Atlas as it may suggest the potential for favourable metallurgical characteristics of the mineralization at the project.
The Atlas project contains many of the key geological and mineralization features of recent multi-million-ounce discoveries at Alturas (Barrick Gold) and Salares Norte (Gold Fields), supporting its potential to host large-scale gold mineralization.
To learn more about the project and recent exploration results see all Current and Historical News Releases.