Tectonic Metals Inc. (TSX-V:TECT) announced assay results of its Rotary Air Blast drilling campaign, including the discovery of a new, high-grade gold mineralized structure on the Company’s Tibbs Project located less than 35 kilometres from Northern Star Resources’ Pogo Mine in the Goodpaster Mining District of Alaska. In the Company’s first-ever drill campaign at Tibbs, Tectonic drilled 6.03 grams per tonne gold over 28.95 metres starting from a drill hole depth of approximately 18m discovering the high-grade M1 Structure at the Michigan Zone, one of 21 gold targets presently known at Tibbs that have the potential for near-surface, high-grade, lode gold mineralization. The Michigan Zone consists of a newly interpreted, greater than one kilometre long, northeast-trending deformation zone defined by several mineralized structures, including the main M1 Structure hosting the 6.03 g/t Au over 28.95m. The deformation zone is also defined by high-grade rock samples in excess of 900 g/t Au, a gold-arsenic-antimony soil geochemical signature and prominent lineaments bounding the deformation zone.
Drill discoveries were also made at the Upper Trench and Hilltop/Oscar Zones. Tectonic drilled 0.51 g/t Au over 12.2m starting from 39.62m in hole TBRB19-016 at the Upper Trench Zone, within a similar northeast-trending, kilometre long deformation zone located 1.5km northwest of Michigan. At the Hilltop/Oscar zone located 3.2km southwest of Michigan, Tectonic drilled 2.35 g/t Au over 6.10m starting from 45.72m in TBRB19-013, an interval which may represent the offset, northern extension of the high-grade Gray Lead vein system.
Tectonic’s President & CEO, Tony Reda, commented, “This is our first-ever drill campaign, both as a company and at Tibbs, and we could not have asked for a better start. In just over two years, we moved into the forgotten Goodpaster District and quickly identified Tibbs as an exceptional exploration project that could be advanced cost-effectively and quickly to discovery. The fact that Tibbs is located less than 35kms from a world-class, operating, high-grade gold mine was a bonus. This drill result of 6.03 g/t Au over 28.95m is one of the strongest drill results to come out of the Goodpaster Mining District in years. Given the broad width, tenor, and scale of the Tibbs Michigan Zone, we are excited to get back in the field and find more gold at not only Michigan but elsewhere on the property now that our knowledge and understanding of how these zones/structures at Tibbs are related has increased.”
Tectonic Chairman, Mel E. Benson, commented, “I am extremely proud of our team and their ability to execute on all fronts. 2019 was a stellar year for Tectonic that involved raising C$5.8 million, taking Tectonic public, bolstering our team, safely executing three exploration programs and two drill programs in a timely manner while respecting the communities and environment in which we work. I am excited about the new drill discoveries and what 2020 has in store for Tectonic.”
2019 Drill Strategy, Objectives and Goal
Tectonic determined that RAB drilling was the most cost-effective method of rapidly testing as many of the 21 gold targets identified at Tibbs as possible in the Company’s first drill campaign. Fences of angled RAB holes were drilled in a fashion that provided complete coverage across mineralized targets to determine the subsurface extent of high-grade mineralization observed at surface in rock and trench sampling. A total of 20 RAB holes were completed for 2,184 metres drilled at nine targets across the property. All assay results from the 2019 RAB drill program have been received; highlights are reported herein, and full assay tables are available on the Company’s website at https://www.tectonicmetals.com/projects/tibbs/#geology . The goal of the 2019 drill program was to drill a discovery and determine the “centre of gravity” at the Tibbs project, both of which were successfully accomplished.
|Prospect||Drill Hole||From (m)||To (m)||Width (m) *||Weighted Grade (g/t Au)|
|*True widths are not known at this time. All widths reported are drilled widths.|
|Additional notes: “TBRB19” drill hole prefixes equate to 2019 RAB drill holes. RAB drill holes are sampled on 5-foot drill rod lengths and converted to metric for input into the drill database and assay table.|
A complete table of drill results from all Tectonic 2019 drill holes at Tibbs as well as maps, sections, and drill assay sheets associated with this news release can be viewed by clicking the following link: https://www.tectonicmetals.com/projects/tibbs/#geology
Additional information about the Tibbs Project, including historical information, can be found in the Amended and Restated NI 43-101 Technical Report, Tibbs Property, Alaska, United States of America with an effective date of October 31, 2019, prepared by Carl Schulze, P.Geo., of Aurora Geosciences Ltd., and prepared in accordance with NI 43-101 which is filed on the Company’s profile on SEDAR.
Geology and Mineralization
Michigan and Upper Trench Zones: Au-As-Sb
The Michigan and Upper Trench zones are hosted by kilometre-scale northeast-trending deformation zones consisting of variably oxidized and strongly sericitized granodiorite. Mineralization, as observed in RAB drill chips, consists of fragments of quartz vein and sulphides (arsenopyrite, stibnite) in the highest-grade intervals, with disseminated arsenopyrite occurring throughout the altered granodiorite. High-grade intervals are interpreted to represent areas of increased quartz-sulphide vein density. Geochemically, mineralized zones are defined by anomalous gold, arsenic, and antimony, with a notable absence of bismuth and tungsten. Though undercut holes TBRB19-004 (Michigan) and TBRB19-017 (Upper Trench) intersected lower-tenor gold mineralization, strong alteration including arsenic and antimony anomalism indicates the structures are continuous at depth.
Hilltop/Oscar Zone: Au-As-Bi-W
The Hilltop/Oscar zone is hosted by granodiorite cut by prominent north-northeast trending lineaments with associated high-grade rock float samples returning up to 75.6 g/t Au. The zone is located 280m northeast of the high-grade Gray Lead vein system, where historic drilling encountered up to 19.1 g/t Au over 5.7m* in a high-grade, steeply northwest-dipping quartz vein. Mineralization observed in RAB drill chips consists of quartz-sulphide vein fragments with a Au-Bi-W geochemical signature surrounded by an As enrichment halo with associated lower-tenor gold.
Tectonic’s top-tier, near-term exploration opportunity at Tibbs is expansion of the M1 Structure through drilling along strike and at depth to define its geometry. In the immediate vicinity of the M1 Structure, a historic Induced Polarization geophysical anomaly remains untested at depth. The relationship of the IP anomaly to the M1 Structure is currently unknown; however, additional modern IP, as well as other geophysical techniques, can now be tested at Michigan in an attempt to detect additional mineralization and obtain a geophysical signature that can be applied throughout the property. Tectonic believes the exploration potential at Michigan is high due to the prominence of the deformation zone, the presence of high-grade rock samples along the entire zone, and a historic 2011 drill hole 30m to the north of Tectonic’s 2019 drill fence, which was terminated in mineralization now interpreted to represent the M1 Structure at depth of 250m below surface.
Analysis of soil and rock geochemistry, interpretation of lineaments and geophysics suggest that the Michigan, Upper Trench and Wolverine Zones were once connected as a single, >3 km long, northeast-trending structure that is now faulted and offset into approximately 1km long segments, forming a northwest trend. This northwest trend is evident at Northern Star Resources’ Pogo Mine as well as at several other gold districts in Interior Alaska. Tectonic’s understanding of the broader, regional picture and how mineralized structures at Tibbs and elsewhere within the Goodpaster Mining District are related gives Tectonic confidence that additional near-surface, high-grade gold discoveries in large structures are possible at Tibbs.
Tectonic’s Vice President, Exploration, Eric Buitenhuis, commented, “The Tectonic team is very excited with the results of our inaugural drill campaign at Tibbs. The discovery of the M1 Structure at Michigan has validated our newly refined structural interpretation and suggests that additional northeast-trending, kilometre-long structures at Upper Trench, where rock grab samples have returned up to 135 g/t Au, and Wolverine are also prospective for high-angle, mineralized structures previously unrecognized at the project. We look forward to aggressively testing this thesis in 2020.”
Scout RAB drilling, consisting of short, angled holes testing high-grade gold observed in rock and trench samples, was conducted at the Blue Lead, Connector/Connector North/Argent, Gray Lead, and Johnson Saddle zones. Results from these drill holes indicate that subsurface mineralization does not reflect the anomalism observed in at surface. Further analysis and interpretation of the structural setting of these targets are required in order to adequately explain the disparity in results. Tectonic believes these targets still exhibit potential due to the significant gold at surface. A complete table of drill results from all Tectonic 2019 drill holes at Tibbs is available at the following link:
Tectonic’s disclosure of a technical or scientific nature in this press release has been reviewed, verified and approved by Eric Buitenhuis, M.Sc., P.Geo., Tectonic’s Vice President Exploration, who serves as a Qualified Person under the definition of National Instrument 43-101. Quality Assurance and Quality Control procedures include the systematic insertion of blanks and standards into the drill sample string at a rate of approximately 1/10 (10%). In addition, field duplicate samples are systematically collected at a rate of 3 duplicates per 100 samples. Samples are placed in sealed bags and shipped directly to the Bureau Veritas Laboratories preparation facility in Fairbanks, Alaska.
The analytical work for the 2019 Tibbs RAB drilling program was performed by Bureau Veritas Laboratories, an internationally recognized and accredited analytical services provider, which is independent of Tectonic. All RAB drill samples were prepared using procedure PRP70-250 (crush, split, and pulverize 250g to 200 mesh) at BV’s Fairbanks, Alaska facility. Samples were then sent to Reno, Nevada, where they underwent analysis for gold by method FA430 (30-gram Fire Assay fusion with an atomic absorption finish (AAS). Samples returning >10 g/t Au were re-analyzed using method FA530-Au (30g Fire Assay with gravimetric finish). Following this, a 0.25g pulp was sent to the Vancouver, British Columbia lab for four-acid Inductively Coupled Plasma Emission Spectrometer (ICP-ES) analysis for 35 elements using method MA300.
Rotary Air Blast Drill Methods
Tectonic employed a GroundTruth Americas Inc. track mounted RAB drill rig with the capacity to drill to 200m depth. RAB bedrock chip samples were collected at fixed 1.52 m (5ft) intervals down each drill hole. The RAB drill delivers compressed air through the centre of 66.6 mm drill rods to activate the drill bit, recovers powdered rock chips from the cutting face and returns sample along the outside of the rods to a conventional cyclone. Each sample comprises a 5-foot run, and sample recovery for each run was recorded. The sample is then tipped out of the pail into a 1:7 riffle splitter, with material to be assayed entering a 12″ x 18″ 8 mil clear poly sample bag which is retained for analysis, while reference sample chips are sieved from a spear sample of the non-split excess material. Borehole diameter was typically 92 mm.
Tectonic Metals Inc. is a mineral exploration company created and operated by an experienced and well-respected technical and financial team with a track record of wealth creation for shareholders. Key members of the Tectonic team were involved with Kaminak Gold Corporation, the company that raised C$165 million to fund the acquisition, discovery and advancement of the Coffee Gold Project in the Yukon Territory through to the completion of a bankable feasibility study before selling the multi-million ounce gold project to Goldcorp Inc. (now Newmont Goldcorp) for C$520 million in 2016.
Tectonic is focused on the acquisition, exploration, discovery and development of mineral resources from district-scale projects in politically stable jurisdictions that have the potential to host world-class orebodies.
Tectonic believes that responsible mineral exploration and development can positively impact the communities in which the company lives and operates and is committed to early and ongoing community engagement, best practices in environmental stewardship and the development of a strong safety culture. Whether at home or at work, the Tectonic team is grounded on the following core values: passion, integrity, patience, focus, perseverance, honesty, fairness, accountability, respect and a play big mindset. The company works for its shareholders and is committed to creating value for them.
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