Andover Nickel-Copper Project (Azure 60% / Creasy Group 40%)
This 70km2 project covers most of the Andover Mafic-Ultramafic Intrusive Complex. Historical exploration demonstrated that it hosts nickel, copper, cobalt, platinum and palladium mineralisation. Being a layered mafic-ultramafic intrusion, Andover is similar geologically to the Fraser Range Province (host to the Nova-Bollinger nickel-copper mine and Legend Mining’s Mawson nickel-copper discovery) and the Julimar Intrusive Complex (host to Chalice Gold Mine’s Gonneville nickel-copper-PGE discovery).
Andover is located 35km southeast of Karratha and immediately south of Roebourne with excellent local infrastructure such as airports, port access, railway, grid power, sealed highways, and support services readily available. It is situated in a well-mineralised district, with the Carlow Castle gold-copper-cobalt deposit 3km to the west, the now-closed Radio Hill nickel-copper mine and plant 28km to the southwest, and the Sherlock Bay nickel deposit 30km to the east.
Drilling by the Creasy Group in 2018 intersected significant nickel and copper sulphide mineralisation at shallow depths in two separate targets.
Azure’s maiden exploration program at Andover, which commenced in August 2020, comprises:
- Surface electromagnetic surveys (FLTEM) covering at least 12 separate targets;
- Diamond core drilling of 12 holes for ≈3,000m; and
- Downhole EM (DHTEM) surveying of the drill holes.
FLTEM surveying was undertaken over 12 separate geophysical anomalies identified by an historical airborne electromagnetic survey, and confirmed the presence of numerous high-quality conductors. Importantly, the Andover project area does not appear to host sulphidic sediments, black shales, conductive overburden or other properties that may generate false positives for the EM surveys, suggesting that these electromagnetic conductors represent bedrock-hosted sulphide bodies.
Azure’s diamond drilling is targeting strong and extensive conductor plates which are interpreted to represent significant bodies of nickel and copper sulphide mineralisation. The first three holes drilled and reported by the Company (ANDD0001, 0002 and 0003) (refer ASX: 12, 16 and 27 October 2020) contained wide intervals of nickel and copper sulphide mineralisation in the form of massive, semi-massive, matrix, blebby and disseminated pentlandite (nickel sulphide), chalcopyrite (copper sulphide) and pyrrhotite (iron sulphide) hosted in gabbro and similar mafic rocks.
Field readings by portable XRF (pXRF) indicate significant nickel and copper grades in the sulphide-rich intervals. In order to support and confirm the pXRF readings, the Company submitted two samples of drill core from holes ANDD0001 and ANDD0002 containing semi-massive, matrix and stringer nickel and copper sulphides to be analysed by Portable Spectral Services utilising the Bruker M4 TORNADO.
The resulting images clearly identify the presence of substantial amounts of pentlandite (Ni) and chalcopyrite (Cu) sulphides. Importantly, the textural characteristics of the sulphide species and, particularly in the ANDD0002 sample, the linear orientation of the sulphide grains present in the spectral scans, indicate that the sulphide mineralisation has been re-mobilised to its current location.