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Dimma becoming brighter prospect for Toro Energy

Updated: 4 days ago

Toro Energy appears to be closing in on a major nickel discovery. Credit: File

Toro Energy’s latest diamond drilling campaign has extended its Dimma nickel discovery – at the revered Yandal greenstone belt in Western Australia’s north-eastern Goldfields – with 2m of continuous massive nickel sulphide intersected from 147.2m.

Management says its new results stretch the mineralisation of its discovery to 160m and that portable-XRF (p-XRF) analysis suggests nickel grades of between 1.5 and 3.4 per cent. It says all five drill holes at Dimma have so far intersected massive and semi-massive nickel sulphide and the discovery remains open along strike in both directions and at depth.

Previous results include zones of visible sulphides of 14.8m, 20.5m, 8.9m and 39m and while the company has tested them with on-the-spot p-XRF analysis, they remain in the lab for final testing.

TED55 is yet another exceptional drilling result for the company and for the Dimma nickel sulphide discovery. The Dimma discovery is shaping up to be something of potential significance, with five holes drilled and five intersections of massive and semi-massive Ni-sulphide so far intersected. There are still kilometres more komatiite yet to be tested further south at our Yandal One nickel prospect. Toro Energy executive chairman Richard Homsany

Dimma is one of four nickel sulphide discoveries in a 7.5km-long komatiite rock unit at Toro’s wholly-owned Dusty nickel project. It sits 50km east of the world-class Mt Keith nickel mine, which had an original resource of 647 million tonnes at 0.52 per cent nickel. Owned by BHP, Mount Keith is a bulk-tonnage nickel mine with remaining resources of 224 million tonnes going 0.53 per cent nickel.

Toro believes the Dusty nickel sulphide deposits are the first massive nickel-sulphide discoveries in the area, which it says had not been drilled to fresh basement prior to its work.

The Dimma discovery is about 400m south of the company’s recent Jumping Jack discovery. It says there remains considerable undrilled strike length between Jumping Jack and Dimma and along strike south of the latter.

Toro has tested 3.5km of the Dusty unit and associated magnetic highs, with four nickel sulphide discoveries being unearthed in the process. The massive nickel-bearing sulphides at Dimma sit at the base of the Dusty unit in the same manner as other holes at the discovery and the adjoining deposits at Jumping Jack, Houli Dooley and Dusty. The nickel-bearing zones at the first three discoveries also have substantial copper, cobalt, platinum and palladium credits, but analysis will be needed to confirm whether it is the same at Dimma.

Headline results from the other discoveries at the project include 9m at 2.07 per cent nickel from 250.9m at Dusty. Houli Dooley has only had one drill hole and it returned 3.05m grading 1.59 per cent nickel from 297.75m. Two holes at Jumping Jack returned up to 3.4m of nickel-bearing semi-massive and massive sulphide from 240.3m downhole, with p-XRF results between 1.44 and 4.66 per cent nickel.

Further south from Dimma, the Yandal One zone extends the strike of the Dusty komatiite nickel host to a combined length of more than 15km.

Late last year, BHP predicted global demand for nickel will grow as much as fourfold during the next 30 years as electric vehicles (EVs) almost entirely replace traditional cars. The world’s biggest miner foreshadowed nine in 10 cars sold by 2040 will be EVs, helping to boost worldwide usage of key battery materials such as nickel.

In recent years, the global market for nickel has been transformed as car batteries take over from stainless steel as its major growth contributor. Yesterday, US auto-giant Ford underlined its target of producing two million electric vehicles by 2026 as it looks to close the gap on market leader, Tesla.

That will take a lot of nickel.

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