VANCOUVER – The TSX-listed stock of Africa-focused explorer Ivanhoe Mining on Tuesday rose 12% after it announced that it had encountered more shallow, high-grade mineralisation at Africa’s largest copper deposit ever – the Kamoa-Kakula copper discovery, in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

A new hole has intersected a shallow, 3.8 km extension (now known as Kakula West) of the Kakula discovery, essentially doubling the Kakula mineralised system to more than 10 km, while it remains open for expansion.

“In the mining exploration business, the very idea that a crew would drill a step-out hole almost 4 km away from the last known mineralisation is virtually unheard of. Nonetheless, our geologists and independent advisers have become so confident in the proven consistency of Kakula’s chalcocite-rich mineralisation that they expected we would find more thick, near-surface, Kakula-style mineralisation in the vicinity of where it actually was discovered. The remarkable success with DD1124 is further validation of our team’s judgment and expertise,” executive chairperson Robert Friedland stated.

The target area where hole DD1124 was drilled was selected by the Kamoa-Kakula geological team at the intersection of the axis of the interpreted Kakula trend, with a southwesterly-northeasterly-trending antiform (the Kakula West antiform). DD1124 intersected 16.3 m of visually moderate-strong chalcocite copper mineralisation, like the mineralisation encountered within the core of the chalcocite-rich Kakula deposit, beginning at a downhole depth of 422.2 m (410 m below surface), which included a 4 m zone of strong to very strong mineralisation beginning at a downhole depth of 432.4 m.

Ivanhoe said it expects assays for DD1124 in about two weeks. The current resource estimate for Kakula, announced last October, only covers about 40% of the presently defined 10.1 km strike length of Kakula’s mineralised trend.

Up to five rigs are being mobilised to fast-track drilling at the Kakula West discovery, the company said.

The Kakula discovery remains open along a westerly-southeasterly strike. Importantly, the chalcocite-rich zone of mineralisation in DD1124 was intersected at a depth of about 400 m, indicating that the Kakula mineralised zone extends significantly closer toward the surface in the area around the new discovery hole.

Ivanhoe’s TSX-listed stock gained C$0.52 a share to C$4.82 at the height of trading Tuesday.

Source: Mining Weekly

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