Drilling programme results
Encouraging Results from Drilling Programme at Diablito Mine
VANE Minerals Plc (
("VANE" or "the Company")
Announcement: Encouraging Results from Drilling Programme at Diablito Mine
VANE Minerals Plc ("VANE" or "the Company") is pleased to announce that it's 100% owned Mexican subsidiary, Minerales VANE SA de CV, has recently completed an encouraging drilling programme at its high grade Diablito silver-gold mine, in Nayarit State, Mexico.
The Diablito mine commenced production from the Main or Lower Vein in November 2005 at a daily rate of 50 tonnes per day and is currently generating US$420,000 of income per month, with a total mining, processing, transportation and smelting cost of US$ 125/t.
The latest drilling was undertaken to further define and extend the remaining resource of 93,000 tonnes @ 12.13g/t gold and 1,319g/t silver (undiluted) calculated over a 130m section of the 300m surface expression of the Lower Vein. The programme has returned encouraging assay results from this vein as well as confirming good mineralisation in a new vein, the Upper Vein, which has been recently identified. Other areas on the concession have also been newly identified for further exploration.
The drilling programme consisted of 20 diamond drill holes drilled from the surface, both inclined and vertical, within the Diablito concession. Assays have now been received for all the drill core sampled and a new resource estimate will be calculated once all assay results and drill hole data has been collated. The Company expects this work to be completed in September and will then review the mine plan with the intention of increasing the daily production rate.
In order to facilitate the additional production and generate cost savings, the Company is in discussion with financiers to provide a convertible debt facility for the construction of its own mill and flotation plant near the project site.
Lower and Upper Vein results:
Holes DIA 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41 and 47, were drilled to confirm the presence of the Lower Vein between the mine workings and holes DIA 30 and 31, which were drilled in a previous programme. In addition, eight drill holes, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46, 48, 50 and 51, were drilled to define the mineralisation down dip from the previous drilling.
Vein intersections confirm the extension of the mineralisation to the south of the current resource blocks. The new drill holes showed that the Lower Vein is flattening and locally thickening with depth and is still open to the southwest while hole DIA 46 indicates that the mineralisation is probably cut off to the southeast.
The more significant intersections in the Lower Vein are:
|Hole No:||TD:||Interval:||Intercept:||Weighted Average:|
(grams per tonne)
|DIA 36||99.5||92.2 to 93.2||1.00||3.9 g/t Au, 621 g/t Ag|
|DIA 38||100.5||97.2 to 98.2||1.00||6.6 g/t Au, 1118 g/t Ag|
|DIA 39||95.7||90.4 to 92.7||2.35||3.2 g/t Au, 701 g/t Ag|
|DIA 41||105.5||91.0 to 91.8||0.8||1.0 g/t Au, 249 g/t Ag|
|DIA 43||107.0||87.6 to 94.6||7.00||10.6 g/t Au, 1021g/t Ag|
|DIA 47||135.5||95.5 to 96.5||1.00||3.5 g/t Au, 435 g/t Ag|
|DIA 48||122.0||109.0 to 112.0||3.00||3.34 g/t Au, 695 g/t Ag|
|DIA 49||51.0||46.6 to 48.0||1.40||2.71 g/t Au, 636 g/t Ag|
|DIA 50||107.0||95.0 to 96.5||1.50||2.19 g/t Au, 367 g/t Ag|
|DIA 53||35.0||29.0 to 29.5||0.50||0.99 g/t Au, 269 g/t Ag|
|DIA 55||66.3||61.9 to 62.6||0.70||7.71 g/t Au, 1873 g/t Ag|
The new drill holes have confirmed the presence of significant mineralisation in the Upper Vein. This vein is parallel to the northeast-southwest trending Lower Vein and was originally observed in holes from the previous drill programme and in the western part of the underground workings. Along strike to the north east the Lower and Upper Veins appear to merge into one.
The Upper Vein is not included in the current mineral resource. However, it will be accessible from existing mine workings and will not require extensive new development.
The more significant intersections in the Upper Vein are:
|Hole No:||TD:||Interval:||Intercept:||Weighted Average:|
|DIA 36||99.5||84.2 to 85.6||1.4||27.2 g/t Au, 1548 g/t Ag|
|DIA 37||98.0||85.0 to 87.0||2.0||29.8 g/t Au,1507 g/t Ag|
|DIA 38||100.5||87.5 to 89.2||1.7||3.7 g/t Au, 313 g/t Ag|
|DIA 39||95.7||85.0 to 86.7||1.7||12.9 g/t Au, 919 g/t Ag|
|DIA 40||107.0||83.5 to 84.0||0.5||2.8 g/t Au, 155 g/t Ag|
|DIA 42||127.5||83.0 to 83.7||0.7||6.2 g/t Au, 598 g/t Ag|
|DIA 43||107.0||80.4 to 83.1||2.7||6.0 g/t Au, 468 g/t Ag|
|DIA 44||107.7||90.5 to 92.5||2.0||4.0 g/t Au, 233 g/t Ag|
New Areas to explore on the concession:
The Diablito Mine is located on a 300m section of a northeast - southwest trending vein system bounded to the east and west by faults. A number of holes were drilled to test for the extension of the vein on the "far side" of these faults.
A faulted, offset, portion of the Lower Vein outcrops to the east of the Diablito mine workings and was intersected in hole DIA 26 (from an earlier drill programme). Holes DIA 49, 53 and 55 were designed to determine the Lower Vein's width, strike, thickness and grades.
All three holes intersected anomalous gold and silver mineralisation and indicate that this segment of the vein has a strike length of at least 45m and extends down dip from the vein sub-crop for 75m. The mineralised intercepts are between 4.90 metres and 8.00 metres wide and have a typical grade of less than 1g/t gold and 200g/t silver. However, there are two intercepts that are more encouraging:
DIA 55 0.7 metres @ 7.71g/t gold and 1873g/t silver
DIA 49 1.4 metres @ 2.71g/t gold and 636g/t silver
One hole, DIA 52, was located to the west of the main Diablito workings, across a fault identified in the earlier drilling and subsequently in the underground workings, in an attempt to locate the fault offset portion of the vein system. Siliceous volcanic rocks with trace amounts of visible sulphide mineralisation were encountered at the lithic tuff - andesite contact. Anomolous gold and silver mineralisation was identified intermittently over a 2m interval, with a peak of 0.69 g/t Au and 116.6 g/t Ag. This anomaly will be investigated further.
The Directors believe that further drilling is warranted on this portion of the vein structure.
Drill hole DIA 54 was designed to explore the newly discovered Cantina vein, with approximately 100m of strike length, located 600 metres northwest of the Diablito mine and northeast of the village of Las Lumbes. The hole intersected a 5.2m thick composite zone with quartz veins and volcanic rocks. Visible sulphides included galena and sphalerite. Assay values for gold and silver are low and zinc and lead assays are pending.
Sampling and mapping in the old workings indicate possible near-surface open pittable ore as well as extensions of the underground ore zones.
The Directors of VANE believe that the Diablito concession holds promise for additional resources both in the area of the current mining operations as well as from more distal parts of the concession. Geologic mapping and sampling will continue to evaluate these areas as sources of future ore.
Michael Spriggs, Chairman of VANE commented, "We are very encouraged by the results of this drill programme and are confident that the additional resources will more than replenish that which has been mined to date. Diablito has provided important funds for VANE, allowing us to grow and develop our portfolio, and we will continue to optimise the returns from this mine going forward."
Clark Arnold, Ph.D Geology, who is Director of Geology for VANE Minerals and who meets the criteria of a qualified person under the AIM rule guidance for mining, oil and gas companies, has reviewed and approved the technical information contained within this announcement.
About VANE Minerals:
VANE Minerals was founded by the former international exploration team of Freeport McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc., one of the world's largest producers of copper and gold. The team negotiated exclusive access to Freeport-McMoRan's global exploration database, made up of 7,000 plus files generated over nearly 100 years of exploration and, following the review of these files, VANE is ideally placed to capitalise on project acquisition opportunities. The Company has assembled a highly qualified and experienced management team with a proven track record in exploration and development, who have spent their entire careers searching for and defining large scale mineral deposits.
The Company's principal objective, as set out at the time of its listing in June 2004, is to be a self-funding exploration company. As such, the initial focus has been to identify high grade gold-silver projects which can be brought into production as quickly as possible in order to provide revenue towards funding the discovery of potentially much larger projects. VANE is well on its way to achieving this objective as production began at the Diablito silver-gold mine in Mexico in November 2005. The Company is using the revenue generated by this producing mine to help fund exploration work across its attractive portfolio of gold, silver, copper and uranium assets in Mexico, Paraguay and the US.
VANE Minerals Plc Matthew Idiens +44 (0) 20 7667 6322
Parkgreen Communications Cathy Malins +44 (0) 20 7493 3713
Ambrian Partners Limited Richard Brown +44 (0) 20 7776 6417
Daniel Stewart & Co Dan Willmott +44 (0)20 7776 6550