Perpetual Resources has started diamond drilling at its Painan Project in Sumatra, Indonesia, to check the near-surface and down-dip extent of the two coal seams exposed on surface. To date, 180 metres has been drilled in two holes, both of which have intersected coal seams.

One hole has intersected coal seams with minor partings from 12.55 metres to 16.30 metres while the second hole has intersected coal seams with many partings from 34.50 metres to 37.67 metres.

The consulting geologist was expected on site to confirm coal/drill quality and supervise sampling protocols of the coal intersections that are preserved in cling wrap.

The Painon project covers 192.08 hectares and is 60km south of Padang in the central west of West Sumatra. The harbour at Padang is being expanded and deepened. Once this has been completed it will be possible to export coal in bulk carriers direct to clients instead of the current smaller parcel handling used at present.

The project has an approved production licence (Production IUP) valid until 2017. Quality of the anthracitic coal is about 7400kcal/kg based on two assays, one for the 5000 tonnes of material sold to date and the other a recent pit channel sample. The channel sample taken from the working pit faces was analysed in a Korean Laboratory and clearly indicates the coal is anthracite.

The potential of the project could be significant. The geological setting at the pits is identical indicating one coherent target zone. The development of high-grade coal has been confirmed at various sites within the tenement. Interpretation of satellite imagery indicates that there could be other seams in the area.

Perpetual, which listed on the ASX in February, is aiming to develop multiple coal mines throughout Indonesia and to supply from these mines a high-grade thermal coal export product targeted at China and India’s growing demand for coal-fired power generation.