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Canadian Storm continues to rage for American West Metals

Updated: Mar 26


American West’s chalcocite (dark grey) from 57.3m. Credit: File

American West Metals’ Storm project in Canada is raging on with two new copper zones unveiled in its third diamond drillhole this year, just 1.7km south of the major discovery earlier this month that took its share price to a record post-listing high.


The find is in a new, separate and underexplored part of the Storm project and beneath known near-surface copper mineralisation.


The company’s latest probe with its third hole, drilled to a depth of 396m, yielded what management describes as one of the best intersections ever seen at the project. More than 76m of visible near-surface copper sulphide breccia was intercepted between 32m and 108m downhole, with zones of massive copper sulphide that include chalcocite, bornite and chalcopyrite.


Additionally, a distinct, deeper 2m interval was encountered in a zone of visible breccia and dense vein-style copper sulphide, including chalcocite, bornite and chalcopyrite, from 273m to 275m downhole.


Management says the drillhole successfully confirmed both of its high-priority geophysical targets. The 76m near-surface copper intercept corresponds to its moving loop electromagnetic (MLEM) survey anomaly, while the deeper 2m copper intercept relates to the gravity anomaly near the Southern Graben fault.


The diamond drilling at Storm continues to deliver, producing one of the best intersections ever seen at the Project. The drill hole has also - for the first time - intersected copper sulphides within the deeper horizon close to the southern graben fault, confirming the presence of the sediment-hosted system in new and untested areas. The deeper copper intersection is very significant from the perspective of understanding the overall copper endowment at Storm. This confirms the prospectivity of the whole area around and to the south of the southern graben fault. With every wide-spaced hole encountering the same mineralised unit at depth, the scale potential of the copper system cannot be overstated. American West Metals managing director Dave O’Neill

The company notes that the thick upper copper sulphide zone of mineralisation identified in the latest drillhole is similar to, but more intense than the high-grade mineralisation more than 1km to the east in the 2750m north zone. That was where drilling last year intercepted 41m running 4.18 per cent copper.


Management says its third drillhole has discovered a new near-surface zone of mineralisation and a deeper sediment-hosted copper system in an underexplored area of the Storm project. It believes it highlights the outstanding exploration and expansion potential of both the near-surface, open-pit accessible mineralisation and what it believes could be the deeper, large-scale sedimentary copper system.


American West has named the upper zone “Thunder” to highlight the strength and significance of the discovery. It says that the deeper copper zone is interpreted to correlate with the highly-prospective and distinctive sediment-hosted copper horizon intersected in one diamond drillhole last year and also in the first two holes in this year’s program.

Management also points out that the latest intercept is the first recorded occurrence of the zone south of the Southern Graben fault. It says there are multiple large gravity anomalies that remain untested by drilling and although the 2m intercept is relatively narrow, the company believes the strong presence of chalcocite – which is a copper mineral common in sediment-hosted systems – is highly encouraging.


It will now plan further ground surveys along the 10km of strike as a priority in spring. Diamond drilling will continue to evaluate key geophysical and geological targets in the Storm area, with first assays expected in the next month.


Reverse-circulation (RC) resource definition drilling is also underway with results from two zones expected shortly. Ongoing metallurgical studies will evaluate ore sorting, beneficiation and process optimisation processes on a range of ore types, while an environmental baseline survey will begin later this month.


American West is an Australian clean energy mining company focused on growth through the discovery and development of major base metal mineral deposits in North America. The company’s Storm and Seal projects are on Somerset Island in the territory of Nunavut in northern Canada.


The combined projects cover an area of more than 4000 square kilometres within the Polaris mineral district and are just 120km south of Resolute Bay, the regional community and logistics hub. Storm is owned by Aston Bay Holdings, but American West has the exclusive option to acquire an 80 per cent share.


With the copper price at US$3.81 (AU$5.80) per pound today and tentatively edging upwards in cautious steps following its recent doldrums, the ongoing green energy demand for it may prove to be a key source of optimism for a new supplier on the block – particularly one with record runs on the drilling board.


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