Musgrave Province Project
PepinNini Minerals Limited is currently undertaking exploration programs designed to target nickel-copper sulphide mineralisation and base metal mineralisation in the Musgrave Province, South Australia.
PepinNini has a 100% interest in three granted exploration licence and four exploration licence applications covering approximately 8,223 sq. kms of the Musgrave Province of South Australia. In addition PepinNini subsidiary PepinNini Resources Pty Limited is earning a 51% interest in EL3931 and ELAs 278/82 and 491/94 covering approximately 1,382 sq. kms under a Farm-in and Joint Venture Agreement with Rio Tinto Ltd subsidiary Rio Tinto Exploration Pty Limited.
Unlike other Australian Proterozoic Blocks, such as Broken Hill, Mt Isa, Granites Tanami and Tennent Creek, the Musgrave Block has not been subject to modern exploration techniques. As a consequence the mineral prospectivity has been preserved and presents an exciting exploration opportunity.
Prospective targets for mineralisation have been identified in all tenements held by PepinNini. Radiometric and gravity data indicate large outcropping or relatively shallow ultrabasic intrusions of the Giles Complex are evident in each of the currently granted tenements and represent priority exploration targets for nickel copper sulphide mineralisation with associated cobalt, gold and platinum group metals. The Giles Complex is considered to be highly prospective for nickel-copper sulphide and platinum group element mineralisation following the discovery of the Nebo-Babel deposit in Western Australia by WMC (392Mt @ 0.3%Ni and 0.33%Cu).
Detailed geophysical data including airborne EM data flown by Rio Tinto Ltd over approximately 160 square kilometres in areas held by PepinNini has indicated conductive bodies in a mapped troctolitic anorthosite intrusion representing a priority target for nickel copper sulphide mineralisation based on the Voiseys Bay model.
Sulphide bearing ultrabasic rocks were intersected in boreholes drilled by the South Australian Department of Mines during 2002 in EL4587. Elevated levels of nickel, copper, platinum, palladium and gold were assayed in samples taken from surface to 28 metres depth in one borehole. The boreholes were located in the vicinity of an interpreted large layered ultrabasic intrusive (10 kilometre diameter) identified from regional geophysical data.
Pentlandite and chalco-pendlandite have been identified in a surface sample collected during a field reconnaissance survey conducted within ELA 367/09 by the South Australian Department of Mines during October/November, 2004.
Drilling by PepinNini within EL4587 has intersected sulphide-bearing mafic/ultramafic rocks with concentration of nickel and copper mineralisation confirming the geological environment exists for the potential development and accumulation of Voiseys Bay style mineralisation. The presence of mixed sulphide mineralisation assaying up to 0.46% Cu and 0.33% Ni provides encouragement that the Harcus Intrusion could host significant nickel-copper sulphide mineralisation. The discovery of sulphide mineralisation provides a focus for further intensive exploration activities and encouragement that proximal targets and other intrusions may also contain sulphide mineralisation.
Current exploration activities by PepinNini are focussed on the Cooperinna Block of EL4587. Three SkyTEM508 airborne electromagnetic (AEM) surveys covering approximately 1,300 line kms were completed during March 2012 over the Hanging Knoll Area, the Caroline Intrusion and the Cooperinna Block. The survey was undertaken as part of a collaborative funding program with the South Australian Government. PepinNini Minerals was awarded a $75,000 grant for the program as part of the South Australian Government’s ‘Plan for Accelerated Exploration 2020’ (PACE 2020) Initiative. A total of 14 strong electromagnetic conductive responses have been identified from the survey data and are interpreted as possibly representing massive magmatic Ni-Cu sulphide accumulations. A drilling program of at least six diamond core boreholes commenced during July 2012 within the Cooperinna Block of EL 4587 to investigate priority 1 anomalies identified from the SkyTEM508 survey data. PepinNini’s field camp, vacuum rig and diamond drilling rig are currently located at EL4587 Cooperinna.
A 200 line kms VTEM (AEM) Survey was completed during August, 2012 and has identified an additional 16 priority 1 anomalies for future investigation by drilling. These conductivity responses form a number of discrete “multi-line” clusters which locate favourably to the conceptual geological model by being spatially coincident to interpreted mafic-ultramafic intrusions and feeder dykes.
The identification of such distinct strong conductors in the Cooperinna Block from both the VTEM survey and SkyTEM508 survey is very encouraging for the potential discovery of magmatic Ni-Cu sulphide bodies. Reconnaissance field mapping has confirmed the recent interpretation of aeromagnetic and geochemical datasets, which constrain the distribution of rocks that potentially host the target magmatic Ni-Cu sulphide bodies at Cooperinna.
Although PepinNini are initially concentrating on discovering large Ni-Cu sulphide deposits similar to those at Voiseys Bay, Norilsk and Sudbury the Company is aware the tenements are also very prospective for Broken Hill style base metal Pb-Zn-Ag deposits in the metasediments of the Birksgate Complex which also have considerable potential to host base metal sedex deposits similar to Mt Isa and Century. There is also good discovery potential for layered intrusive platinum group element (PGE) sulphide deposits such as the Platreef, Merensky and UG-2 Reefs of the Bushveld Complex in South Africa.
The Musgrave Province is a large, under-explored Proterozoic Block with a diversity of geological environments located in the north-west corner of South Australia extending across the border into the Northern Territory and Western Australia. Proterozoic Blocks represent some of the most prospective terrain for mineral exploration in Australia and include the well known mineral provinces of the Mount Isa Inlier, Broken Hill, the Granites Tanami Block, the Gascoyne Complex and the Tennent Creek Inlier.
Demonstrated potential exists within the Musgrave Province of South Australia for base metals (copper, lead, zinc), ferrous metals (chromium, nickel, vanadium, titanium) and uranium. Potential also exists for precious metals (platinum group metals, gold, silver), precious stones (diamonds, rubies), heavy mineral sands and rare earths.
The prospectivity of Proterozoic rocks is well recognised and, with the exception of those contained within the Musgrave Province, have generally been subject to relatively intense exploration for a considerable period of time yielding a number of world class mineral deposits.
Australian Proterozoic hosted world-class mineral deposits include: