Aton Resources Inc. (TSX-V:AAN) is very pleased to provide investors with an update on the Phase 1 reverse circulation percussion drilling programme at its advanced Rodruin prospect, within the Company’s 100% owned Abu Marawat Concession located in the Eastern Desert of Egypt.
“These results continue to support our belief that Rodruin has the potential to become a significant bulk minable open pit gold mine,” said Mark Campbell, President and CEO. “We continue to see gold mineralisation over wide drilling intervals, which contain good grades with higher grade shoots interspersed. We are particularly encouraged by the wide zones of sulphide-hosted mineralisation we have intersected in the latest drilling, which indicate potential for the development of large bodies of primary mineralisation at depth. The first pass 4,000 metre drilling programme continues apace as we move across the South Ridge so as to get an overall perspective of what we have, and we will use this as the basis of our next drilling campaign early next year. The exploration drilling at Rodruin and the 17 exploration targets over our 738km2 concession area, coupled with the coming changes to the mineral resources legislation in Egypt, combine to make the future for Aton and our shareholders a bright one.”
RC drilling at Rodruin
The Phase1 RC drilling programme at Rodruin is continuing, and is now expected to be completed around the beginning of December 2018. Assay results have now been received from a further 10 holes, ROP-008 to ROP-017, all completed within the western Aladdin’s Hill zone of the Rodruin area (see Figure 1). Full details of mineralised intervals from these holes are provided in Appendix A, and selected intersections are shown in Table 1. Initial drilling has since been testing the Central Buttress, Spiral Pit and Central Valley areas, and further assay results will be released when they become available.
A photo accompanying this announcement is available at
|Hole ID||Collar co-ordinates1||Dip||Grid Azimuth||EOH depth (m)||Comments|
|ROP-008||552322||2913054||789||-60||170||150||Holes ROP-008 to ROP-010 all missed target due to large deflections in holes|
|ROP-011||552353||2913021||787||-80||350||31||Abandoned due to old workings|
|ROP-012||552382||2912996||783||-60||354||200||Hit sulphide mineralisation|
|ROP-013||552383||2912996||783||-60||15||200||Hit sulphide mineralisation|
|ROP-015||552355||2913020||788||-55||360||5||Abandoned due to old workings|
|ROP-017||552428||2913076||743||-75||183||190||Hit sulphide mineralisation|
Table 1: Collar details of RC drill holes ROP-008 to ROP-017
|Hole ID||Length (m)||Intersection (m) 1||Au (g/t)||Ag (g/t)||Zn (%)||Comments|
|ROP-009||125||40||44||4||5.70||3.9||0.52||Hole failed to intersect target|
|ROP-011||31||16||27||11||0.88||4.9||0.20||Hole abandoned at 31m, after intersecting numerous voids and ancient workings|
|ROP-012||200||15||41||26||1.82||14.0||1.80||15-41m: mineralisation in gossanous carbonates, with ancient workings and voids; 98-144m: mineralisation in fresh pyritic carbonate host rock|
|ROP-013||200||14||39||25||1.30||16.0||0.81||14-39m: mineralisation in gossanous carbonates, with ancient workings and voids; 135-156m: mineralisation in fresh pyritic carbonate host rock|
|ROP-014||110||17||51||34 2||1.28||8.9||0.88||Mineralisation in gossanous carbonates, with ancient workings and voids|
|ROP-015||5||2||5||3||0.76||1.3||0.52||Hole abandoned at 5m, after intersecting workings/voids|
|ROP-016||110||0||5||5||1.11||5.6||8.28||High grade oxide Zn and Au mineralisation intersected at surface|
|ROP-017||190||0||163||163 2||0.90||7.4||2.54||High grade oxide Zn and Au mineralisation intersected at surface; sulphide Au±Zn mineralisation from c. 70m depth|
Table 2: Selected mineralised intersections from drill holes ROP-008 to ROP-017
Drill holes ROP-008 to ROP-010, were drilled on the western margins of the phyllic-hosted mineralisation at Aladdin’s Hill (see news release dated October 1, 2018) but these 3 holes all had very large deflections in the holes and subsequently missed their intended targets. Nonetheless hole ROP-009 intersected 4m @ 5.70 g/t Au, from 40m depth (see Table 1 and Appendix A), associated with a narrow zone of similar heavily phyllic altered rock. The excessive deflections in these holes contributed to the decision to temporarily suspend drilling at Rodruin (see news release dated October 16, 2018), but these issues have now been addressed and resolved by the drilling contractor.
Drill holes ROP-011 and ROP-015 were drilled to test a zone of ancient workings hosted in gossanous carbonate rocks to the immediate north of Aladdin’s Hill, but both were abandoned well short of their target depths after intersecting numerous and/or large voids, presumed to be ancient workings. Both holes intersected near surface mineralisation including 11m @ 0.88 g/t Au (hole ROP-011).
Drill hole ROP-012 to ROP-014 were also drilled to test near surface gossanous carbonate hosted mineralisation previously intersected in drill hole ROP-004 (38m @ 1.84 g/t Au, see new release dated October 16, 2018), and all returned significant near surface intersections confirming the results of ROP-004, including 26m @ 1.82 g/t Au and 14.0 g/t Ag (ROP-012) 25m @ 1.30 g/t Au and 16.0 g/t Ag (ROP-013) and 34m @ 1.28 g/t Au and 8.9 g/t Ag (ROP-014), as well as carrying significant Zn values.
Holes ROP-012 and ROP-013 were both drilled to 200m depth, with both intersecting significant zones of Au-Ag mineralisation in white, strongly pyritic and dolomitic carbonate rocks, returning intersections including 34m @ 0.49 g/t Au and 18.8 g/t Ag (ROP-012) and 21m @ 0.55 g/t Au and 8.9 g/t Ag (ROP-013). Hole ROP-013 also intersected 7m @ 3.00 g/t Au and 10.0 g/t Ag, on a mineralised contact between carbonate and metasedimentary lithologies.
Holes ROP-016 and ROP-017 were both drilled to the northeast of Aladdin’s Hill to test high grade Au-Zn mineralisation intersected in surface channel profile ROC-009 (65.3m @ 2.84 g/t Au and 5.26% Zn, see new release dated September 24, 2018). Both holes intersected polymetallic mineralisation from surface, associated with gossanous carbonate rocks, with significantly high zinc grades, including 34m @ 1.39 g/t Au, 8.6 g/t Ag, 0.59% Cu and 8.86% Zn (ROP-017).
More significantly, hole ROP-017 was mineralised from surface to a downhole depth of 163m, in both the oxide and fresh sulphide zones, returning an overall mineralised intersection of 163m @ 0.90 g/t Au, 7.4 g/t Ag, and 2.54% Zn. This included an interval of 55m @ 1.23 g/t Au, 10.4 g/t Ag, and 1.40% Zn from 108m, predominantly in altered and silicified carbonate host rocks with significant pyrite, and Cu and Zn sulphide mineralisation. Mineralisation also occurred in altered metasediments throughout this hole.
The latest drilling results continue to confirm that gold mineralisation occurs in both the oxide zone and in fresh rock over a significant area at Aladdin’s Hill. The results of drill holes ROP-012 to ROP-014 confirm the previous results from hole ROP-004 and surface channel sampling, and that significant zones of gold-silver-zinc mineralisation outcrop at surface in the Aladdin’s Hill area, associated with gossanous and weathered carbonate rocks.
These latest assay results also, and very significantly, confirm that the sulphide mineralisation intersected in drill hole ROP-017 over a very significant width, is mineralised with gold and silver at potentially economic grades, as well as with zinc and copper, in fresh rock at depth. The zone of sulphide mineralisation intersected in hole ROP-017 certainly appears to represent the primary hypogene equivalent of the gossan-hosted gold mineralisation identified at surface and in the weathered zones in the Aladdin’s Hill area. The mineralisation at Rodruin is structurally complex, and the area has been subject to folding, faulting and thrusting, and Aton geologists are working to understand the relationships between the mineralisation identified in drilling and at surface to date. The results of the latest tranche of assay results gives the Company confidence in our belief that Rodruin potentially hosts very significant bodies of primary hypogene gold mineralisation, which are expressed at surface as zones of gossan-hosted mineralisation. Further drilling is planned to follow up on this latest batch of results.
Furthermore, the identification of very high grades of oxide zinc mineralisation at surface in hole ROP-017 is of potential interest in itself. Zinc is strongly associated with the gold-silver mineralisation at Rodruin and is typically significantly elevated in almost all of the gossan-hosted mineralised intervals in the Aladdin’s Hill area.
Further drilling has also now been completed on the Central Buttress zone, which intersected gossanous carbonates and more ancient underground mine workings in all 4 holes completed, to downhole depths of between 50-70m. Gossan-hosted mineralisation has also been intersected in holes completed beneath the Spiral Pit ancient workings, as well as in holes that have been drilled from the Central Valley, along with further large ancient underground workings which were unexpected, and that had no significant surface expression. Assays from these new holes remain pending, and will be released when they become available.
These latest assay results, with the confirmation of a wide zone of sulphide-associated gold mineralisation in hole ROP-017, continue to give credence to Aton’s interpretation which suggests the potential development of large bodies of primary hypogene mineralisation at Rodruin, and that the gossanous mineralisation identified over a wide areal extent is the surface expression of deeper hypogene mineralisation. The current results and logging of ongoing drilling continue to give Aton strong encouragement that the Rodruin area may be host to significant bulk tonnages of gold mineralisation, with localised zones of coarse gold bearing and potentially very high grade mineralisation, such as at Aladdin’s Hill and the Spiral Pit.
A photo accompanying this announcement is available at
The Rodruin prospect was discovered in December 2017 by Aton geologists (see news release dated December 14, 2017), and is located approximately 18km east of the Company’s Hamama West mineral deposit (see Figure 2). Field mapping and sampling has indicated the presence of ancient mine workings and extensive gold mineralisation over an area of at least 700m x 400m at surface. Mineralisation is associated with a sequence of carbonate and metasedimentary slate and greywacke rock types. Abundant visible gold has been identified in hand specimens from surface outcrops, and ancient dumps and underground workings, with individual selective grab samples assaying up to 321 g/t Au. The main series of ancient underground workings in the Aladdin’s Hill area has been sampled to approximately 40m below ground level, indicating continuation of the surface mineralisation at depth (see news releases dated February 6, 2018, March 5, 2018 and April 16, 2018), and drilling has now confirmed the presence of high grade gold mineralisation with individual samples returning assays of up to 221 g/t Au over metre intervals (see news release dated October 1, 2018). Underground workings at the Spiral Pit have been sampled to a depth of 12-15m below ground level, returning assays of up to 35.3 g/t Au and 37.9% Zn (see news release dated August 7, 2018).
Sampling and analytical procedures
Drill holes were drilled at 140mm diameter, and the bulk percussion chip samples were collected directly into large plastic bags from the cyclone every metre, numbered with the hole number and hole depths by the drill crew, and laid out sequentially at the drill site. RC chips were logged onsite by a senior Aton geologist. The bulk 1m samples were weighed, and subsequently riffle split through a 3-tier splitter onsite by Aton field staff to produce an approximately 1/8 split, which was collected in cloth bags, numbered and tagged with the hole number and depth. The reject material from this initial bulk split was re-bagged, labelled and tagged, and the bulk reject samples will be stored and retained on site at Rodruin. A representative sample of each metre was washed, stored in marked plastic chip trays, each containing 20m of samples, photographed, and retained onsite as a permanent record of the drill hole.
All the 1m split samples were weighed again, and the samples selected for assay were riffle split onsite, typically a further 3-4 times using a smaller lab splitter, to produce a nominal c. 250-500g sample split for dispatch to the assay laboratory. The laboratory splits were allocated new sample numbers. QAQC samples were inserted into the sample runs dispatched to the assay laboratory at a nominal rate of 1 duplicate sample for every 10 drill samples, 1 blank sample every 10 samples, and 1 standard sample of a certified reference material every 40 samples. Reject material from the 1m samples, after the laboratory split had been taken, and any unused 1m splits will be retained at the Company’s Hamama facility for future reference purposes, as and when required.
The selected c. 250-500g split samples were shipped to ALS Minerals at Rosia Montana, Romania for analysis. Samples were analysed for gold by fire assay with an atomic absorption spectroscopy (“AAS”) finish (analytical code Au-AA23); and silver, copper, lead and zinc with an aqua regia digest followed by an AAS finish (analytical code AA45). High grade gold samples (>10 g/t Au) were re-analysed using analytical code Au-AA25 (also fire assay with an AAS finish). High grade Ag and base metal samples (Ag >100 g/t, and Cu, Pb, and Zn >10,000ppm or >1%) were re-analysed using the ore grade technique AA46 (also an aqua regia digest followed by an AAS finish).
About Aton Resources Inc.
Aton Resources Inc. is focused on its 100% owned Abu Marawat Concession located in Egypt’s Arabian-Nubian Shield, approximately 200km north of Centamin’s Sukari gold mine. Aton has identified a 40km long gold mineralised trend at Abu Marawat, anchored by the Hamama deposit in the west and the Abu Marawat deposit in the east, containing numerous gold exploration targets, including three historic British mines. Aton has identified several distinct geological trends within Abu Marawat, which display potential for the development of RIRG and orogenic gold mineralisation, VMS precious and base metal mineralisation, and epithermal-IOCG precious and base metal mineralisation. Abu Marawat is over 738km2 in size and is located in an area of excellent infrastructure; a four-lane highway, a 220kV power line, and a water pipeline are in close proximity.
The technical information contained in this News Release was prepared by Javier Orduña BSc (hons), MSc, MCSM, DIC, MAIG, SEG(M), FGS, Exploration Manager of Aton Resources Inc. Mr. Orduña is a qualified person under National Instrument 43-101 Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects.
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