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Drilling identifies extensions to Alien Metals’ Hancock Iron Ore Project

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Global Mining Review,

Alien Metals Ltd, a minerals exploration and development company, has provided an update on findings and results on its Phase 3 drilling programme at the company's Hancock Iron Ore project, part of its Hamersley Iron Ore Project, Western Australia, further to its announcement of 11 November 2021.


  • Extensions to existing inferred resources have been identified in the recently completed reverse circulation (RC) drilling programme.
    • 46 RC holes for 1146 m were completed prior to the end of 2021, targeting extensions to known deposits and infill drilling on existing resource of 10.4 million t at 60.4% iron (Fe).
  • As part of the ongoing development studies, the company also collected a bulk sample of about 1000 kg of high-grade material for initial metallurgical test work.
  • The previously designed diamond drill programme commenced on 10 January 2022.
    • The 7 hole, 650 m programme is designed to further increase the confidence in the JORC 2021 inferred mineral resource estimate, as well as to provide additional material for early metallurgical and commutation testing as part of ongoing mining studies.
  • The company has also delineated new drilling targets from laboratory XRF results of 60 rock chip samples collected during the recent field reconnaissance programme.
  • On the company's Brockman tenement, management has announced the successful completion of the Heritage and Ethnological Surveys that will enable exploratory fieldwork to commence shortly.
  • Further updates will be provided when the results of the drill programme are available.

Bill Brodie Good, CEO and Technical Director of Alien Metals, commented: “Progress on the company's Iron Ore Company of Australia (IOCA) project continues to advance rapidly. The completion of the RC programme, bulk sample and new rock chip sampling before the start of the wet season was a terrific effort by the team and a great outcome for investors. Due to continued availability pressures from the ongoing COVID-19 restrictions within the state of Western Australia, the diamond core drill rig was delayed, but we are pleased that it has now started. The identification of additional untested mineralised ridges is a very exciting development and we look forward to drill testing these over the coming months and identifying even more to develop.”

As announced on 11 November 2021, the RC drilling that was completed at the end of 2021 comprised a total of 46 holes for 1146 m, with just over half of the drilling taking place on Ridges C and E. This drilling focused on identifying extensions of the JORC resources along strike as well as. Of the 28 holes drilled on Ridge E, 18 drill holes were designed to increase the geological knowledge within the current resource as well as testing a further 650 m along strike while four holes were drilled to update the Ridge C resource with a couple of initial test holes extending the strike potential by a further 350 m at Ridge C.

A further four exploratory holes in the newly defined Ridge F and 6 in Ridge G were also drilled to complete this drill programme.

Additional rock chip sampling programme

At the same time, the team took the opportunity to undertake a quick field reconnaissance programme on the untested Ridges F, G and H, which resulted in 60 rock chip samples being taken. These were submitted to ALS Perth for industry standard sample preparation including crushing and pulverising with then a meltdown of an ensuing homogenous part of the sample into a bead for analysis for total iron (Fe2O3).

The results returned a significant new 800 m long high grade anomaly on the part of Ridge H samples, 800 m of about 5 – 6 km strike length, as well as a lower grade but still significant trend of similar strike length on Ridge G as well. As the company has stated, these initial results identify the presence of further high grade iron ore within the tenement and still leave numerous kilometres of ridges remaining to test and work up.

Drill results

All samples generated from the drilling will be dispatched to ALS Perth. Further announcements will be made when the results are received, anticipated to be in 10 – 12 weeks' time.

Samples will be analysed for their Basic Iron Ore Package Analysis with XRF finish, which includes Fe, aluminium, calcium, potassium, magnesium, manganese, sodium, phosphorous, sulfur and silicon. This is the same as the analysis and laboratory used in all Alien's analysis work on these projects to maintain consistency and comparability between all analyses.

For QA/QC purposes, Alien used the industry standard of inserting 5% certified reference material (CRM) samples, 5% certified blank samples (Blanks) and 5% duplicate samples at source. The CRMs were sourced from Geostats Pty Ltd, Perth, a global leader in the manufacture and sale of CRMs and Blanks.


Maiden drilling on the Brockman tenement is still a priority, with a follow up field mapping and sampling programme planned prior to finalising a drilling programme, along with obtaining the necessary permission to drill within the tenement. The completion of the Heritage and Ethnological Surveys that will enable exploratory fieldwork to commence shortly were completed at the end of last year and the company is working through the draft reports to finalise and have them officially registered.

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Australian mining news Iron ore mining news