The latest results from the Phase 1 drilling program at Axiom Mining’s Isabel Nickel Project in the Solomon Islands continue to confirm high grade, shallow nickel mineralisation on the San Jorge tenement. Drilling has targeted an area that presents optimal logistical characteristics of an initial mining direct shipping ore (DSO) operation.
Results from the drilling will be used to deliver a mineral resource estimate which is expected in the next few weeks.
Highlights from the most recent results include 15.4 metres @ 1.07% nickel from 2.5 metres, including 3.6 metres at 1.65%; 12.5 metres @ 1.22% from 2.5 metres, including 6.1 metres @ 1.59%; 8.5 metres @ 1.12% from 2 metres, including 2 metres @ 1.7% nickel; and 10.5 metres @ 1.11% from 1.5 metres, including 3.5 metres @ 1.58%.
Phase 1 was designed to establish an initial area for mining, satisfy criteria for the submission of a mining lease application and produce an initial JORC mineral resource.
Phase 1 of the program at San Jorge has now concluded with the 50 by 50 metre drill pattern complete across the initial area of focus. The definition program included selected 25 metre infill holes as well as sterilisation holes on the edge on the known mineralised zone to assist with initial mining boundaries to ensure efficiency in proceeding to stockpiling and mining.
With the completion of Phase 1, the company is focused on key elements to commence mining including licensing and permitting. Axiom is also assessing the additional historically modelled mineralised areas over the remainder of the tenement, as well as recently identified new exploration targets, that occur at San Jorge.
Axiom says significant potential for additional saprolite mineralisation occurs at San Jorge that warrants modern testing, which will likely to occur parallel to mining operations.
Drilling activities will now pause while waiting the grant of a mining licence at San Jorge although some other exploration and development activities will continue during March. Phase 2 of the resource and exploration drilling program is planned to commence in tandem with start-up mining activities upon grant of the mining lease.
Meantime, Axiom has raised $1.5 million after successfully completing the placement component of its capital raising. Sophisticated and professional investors were issued 9.375 million shares and 4.68 million attaching options, expiring December 14, 2018.
The placement is the first part of a two-part capital raising of up to $6.9 million, with the funds to be used to push the Isabel project towards production. A 1:10 non-renounceable rights issue will close this week.