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Canada Nickel announces MacDiarmid exploration target LOI

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Global Mining Review,

Canada Nickel Company Inc. and Noble Mineral Exploration have announced that they have entered into a binding letter of intent (LOI) to consolidate ownership of a recently identified high priority nickel target in MacDiarmid township.


  • Completion of regional geophysics and interpretation of historical drilling has yielded multiple targets including the MacDiarmid target in excess of 1.8 km long and an average of 400 m wide – a similar quality target and approximately 15% larger than the size of original Crawford Main Zone discovery.
  • Entire MacDiarmid target has now been acquired through a binding letter of intent with Noble Mineral Exploration to consolidate additional mining claims around entire target.

The LOI options additional claims adjacent to the original MacDiarmid property option previously announced on 13 July 2020. Canada Nickel has identified prospective targets on the option properties it obtained from Noble: Kingsmill, Mahaffy-Aubin, Nesbitt North, and Crawford Nesbitt-Aubin and drilling on several of these targets is expected to begin during the current winter season.

“With MacDiarmid’s location just west of the Kidd Creek Mine, we are thrilled by the district-scale potential of this rapidly emerging nickel sulfide corridor along Highway 655 and we look forward to unlocking the potential of MacDiarmid in addition to the other properties optioned from Noble.” said Mark Selby, Chair and CEO of Canada Nickel.

Airborne geophysics and a compilation of historical exploration activities led to the identification of the MacDiarmid target, 1.8 km long and an average 400 m wide geophysical footprint, 15% larger than Canada Nickel’s original Crawford Main Zone discovery. The geophysics results were further confirmed by review of historical drill logs (no assays were completed) for all seven holes drilled entirely within the target coincident anomaly which all intersected dunite or peridotite (the mineralised host rock at Crawford) across the bulk of the core length. All seven of the holes also indicated presence of magnetite and sulfides in abundances consistent with that seen in Crawford core logs.

Vance White, President & CEO of Noble, added: “Today’s results support our belief that the nickel exploration potential on the set of properties that were optioned to Canada Nickel has the potential to generate as much or more return for our shareholders as the original Crawford transaction. Noble has always been very confident that the Project 81 land package has the potential to generate multiple large tonnage Nickel Sulfide deposits and with the expertise of CNC, we think we are well on our way to realise this potential.”

The Crawford Nickel-Cobalt Sulfide Project is located in the heart of the prolific Timmins-Cochrane mining camp in Ontario, Canada, and is adjacent to well-established, major infrastructure associated with over 100 years of regional mining activity.

MacDiarmid Nickel-Cobalt Sulfide Target

As Canada Nickel continues to advance its Crawford discovery, the company has been working through the interpretation of an airborne geophysics survey program completed in September 2020, on the set of properties optioned from Noble Mineral Exploration (see Canada Nickel announcement dated 13 July 2020). The company has identified a number of nickel-cobalt targets on the MacDiarmid, Kingsmill, Mahaffy-Aubin, and Nesbitt properties – the MacDiarmid target being the most attractive. Drilling on each of the targets is expected during the current winter season.

Drill results from the Crawford Ultramafic Complex have demonstrated that coincidental strong magnetic high and gravity low geophysics anomalies have generally delivered mineralisation with higher grades from the Crawford project. The Crawford Main Zone measured and indicated resource of 606 million t grading 0.26% nickel, including 201 million t grading 0.34% nickel at a 0.30% cutoff (see Canada Nickel announcement dated 18 January 2021), is hosted mainly in serpentinised dunite or peridotite.

The coincident MacDiarmid anomaly is 15% larger than Crawford, measuring a combined 1.8 km long by average 400 m wide. Based on historic drill hole logs, the MacDiarmid target is an ultramafic intrusion with identified serpentinised dunite and peridotite, much of it was not assayed (as the historic target was not nickel sulfides).

Over 50 holes have been drilled in the area since the original Inco hole in 1946 but only eleven holes ever intersected the ultramafic intrusion. Of those only seven holes intersected the coincident magnetic and gravity anomaly portion of the intrusion. These seven holes all intersected dunite and/or peridotite over their entire length, interrupted only by narrow dykes and faults. All seven of the drill holes had similar quantities of visible magnetite and sulfides as in the Crawford drill holes, magnetite being an indicator of serpentinisation which is the process that generates nickel mineralization in this type of ultramafic body. Four holes drilled outside the anomaly (MCD32-02, MCD41-02, MAC-3, MAC-4) intersected significant sulfides within much of the volcanic rocks intersected. While these holes did not intersect dunite or peridotite across their entire length, the presence of sulfides is a good indicator of the presence of sulfur inside the intrusion, which is critical to the formation of nickel sulfide minerals.

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