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Drilling forges ahead as Legend Mining tests nickel targets

Updated: Apr 17

Legend Mining’s drilling operation at its Octagonal prospect in WA’s Fraser Range. Credit: File

Legend Mining is midway through a diamond drilling program targeting two significant nickel-copper sulphide targets at its Octagonal prospect in Western Australia’s Fraser Range – home to IGO’s mammoth Nova-Bollinger nickel-copper-cobalt mine.

The company says it has the rig has lined up in the second hole on its “Target A” anomaly, testing extensions to the known mineralised Octagonal intrusion based on interpretations of seismic data. The hole will also test a highly-chargeable induced-polarisation (IP) anomaly before continuing to test the top of a significant AMT conductor.

Legend believes evidence from seismic data, IP and 3D audio magnetotellurics (AMT) anomalies, in conjunction with structural interpretation, gravity modelling and existing drill data, alludes to the likely extension of the mineralised Octagonal intrusion at Target A, outside of a distinctive “eye” aeromagnetic feature.

The company previously noted that Octagonal shows all the characteristics of a fertile magmatic nickel-copper sulphides system similar to the productive Nova-Bollinger and Silver Knight deposits, which are housed along the same structural trend in the Albany-Fraser Belt.

IGO’s Nova-Bollinger deposits hold 11.8 million tonnes averaging 1.76 per cent nickel, 0.71 per cent copper and 0.06 per cent cobalt.

Octagonal is one of a swag of priority prospects at Legend’s Rockford project, which covers more than 3000 square kilometres within the celebrated Fraser Range, about 250km east of Kalgoorlie.

Earlier this year, Legend tabled a maiden nickel-copper-cobalt mineral resource at its Mawson deposit, clocking in at 1.45 million tonnes at 1.14 per cent nickel, 0.74 per cent copper and 0.07 per cent cobalt for 16,500 tonnes of nickel, 10,600 tonnes of copper and 1100 tonnes of cobalt.

Management believes its initial estimate at Mawson still has plenty of room to grow with no bounds to the mineralised envelope and the main source yet to be discovered.

Meanwhile, Legend says its first diamond hole, testing a collective of seismic, IP and AMT anomalies at its “Target B” prospect, has dipped down past the planned trajectory. It says the targets will likely be missed if drilling continues.

So when life gives you lemons, best pull out the juicer and make lemonade … and that’s exactly what Legend is doing. The company is mobilising the navigational tools needed to steer the hole back on track, while taking the opportunity to run a downhole electromagnetic survey to pinpoint any additional targets.

Global inventories of copper, which is used in everything from power cables to electric vehicles, have dropped to their lowest seasonal level since 2008, with investment bank Goldman Sachs predicting the world will run out of visible copper inventories by the third quarter of this year.

Top metal trader Trafigura predicts copper prices could spike as high as US$12,000 (AU$18,180) per metric tonne within the next year amid strong demand from China. Copper is currently trading at US$8337 ($12,625) per tonne.

Given that, it is clearly not a bad time for Legend to be trying to etch out a new nickel, copper and cobalt discovery.

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