Hancock Tenement OVERVIEW
The Hancock Tenement (E47/3954) is one of two tenements in the Hamersley Iron Ore Project, The Hancock tenement is within 20kms of the Newman township and borders licences held by Fortescue Metals Group, Hancock Prospecting, BHP Billiton (Mount Whaleback), Hope Downs and Brockman Mining. The Hancock tenement was previously explored by Rio Tinto plc, BHP Group plc, and more recently Volta Mining Limited (“Volta”). Alien have advanced the project from a few historic drill holes on a single target to a maiden JORC compliant resource across 3 prospects. Two of these prospect Ridges C and E are open along strike for over 9km within the tenement with potential to significantly increase the 10.4Mt @ 60.4% Fe (including 7.8Mt @ 60.1% Fe at the Sirius Extension target and 2.6Mt @ 61.5% Fe at the Ridges targets) resource.
Alien instructed Mining Plus to commence a Scoping Study on the project following the announcement of the MRE. Results will be announced as soon as available.
The initial independent Scoping Study for the Hancock Iron Ore Project has demonstrated exceptionally strong returns are possible from a potential development. Optimisations completed using an iron ore price of US$100/t result in the design pits extracting all of the initial JORC resources identified to date (10.4Mt @ 60.4% Fe). Initial Life of Mine studies show the current resource will sustain an 8-year life based on the following parameters:
- Mining rate of 1.25Mtpa with a pre-production capital estimate of <US$30m
- Exceptionally low strip ratios (c.1:1 on the Ridges deposits)
- Operating costs of <US$60/t FOB
|Commodity||DSO Iron Ore|
|Location||Pilbara, Western Australia|
|Deposit Style||Classic Pilbara BIF Iron Ore style|
|Key Attributes||Hosts Sirius Extension, Ridge C and E Inferred JORC Resources and Kalgan Prospects, large areas of tenement unexplored|
|Asset Stage||Maiden resource, exploration and infill drilling|
|Results||Maiden Inferred JORC compliant resource stands at 10.4Mt @ 60.4% Fe including 7.8Mt @ 60.1% at the Sirius Extension target, 1.5Mt @ 61.2% at the Ridge E target and 1.1Mt @ 61.9% Fe at the Ridge C.|
|Next Phase of Work||Infill drilling to upgrade the resource and drilling across tenement including along the Ridge C and E which extent for 9km to the east|
Maiden JORC Resource
The initial Inferred JORC compliant resource stands at 10.4Mt @ 60.4% Fe including 7.8Mt @ 60.1% at the Sirius Extension target, 1.5Mt @ 61.2% at the Ridge E target and 1.1Mt @ 61.9% Fe at the Ridge C target. The Mineral Resource Statement (“MRE”) has been restricted to material that falls within an optimised open pit shell and within the tenement boundary. Low levels of deleterious elements indicating that Hancock could produce high-quality Direct Shipping Ore (DSO) product. Ridges E and C are only partially tested to date, and the Company feel they have considerable potential to define further DSO grade material.
A brief site visit in November 2019 as part of a due diligence exercise enabled a few samples to be collected from the Kalgan prospect with independent laboratory results confirming the Company’s views on the exploration potential.
Alien has compiled all historic data into a core database extracting all relevant information from a series of old reports and maps and combine this with any new regional remote sensing data available.
Alien completed an exploration field program in November 2020, sampling over the known prospects fully outlining the surface extent of the mineralised units as well as to add mapping and structural information to look for potential repeat structures and orebodies undiscovered to date.
Regional traverses around known prospects have also been done to test as mentioned above the unchartered areas of the tenements and to better understand any repeat structures associated with structural controls in the region.
Seven mapping transects were walked across the Kalgan Prospect to test for the presence and lateral extent of previously reported high grade occurrences of iron ore. In situ outcrop of rock was mapped with 128 mapping points and 25 rock chip samples collected from mainly Banded Iron Formation (BIF) outcrops where iron was the dominant mineral present. BIF dominated by silica bands, dolerite, shale and rhyolite was not sampled in this program. In addition to the walked transects, a helicopter survey of the surrounding terrain was conducted and a further 12 samples were collected.
A series of BIF ridges were mapped parallel to the regional trend and on strike and parallel to the original Kalgan prospect trend and have returned constantly high-grade Iron with the majority from the sampling averaging over 60% Fe. Figure 3 below shows the sample locations and Iron Ore grades and shows the continuity of ridges C and D especially with the current sampling continuity both with consistently greater than 60% Fe grades. Ridge B also appears to host high-grade iron ore mineralisation and was recently sampled to fill in the gap between ridges B and F.
While the mapping and sampling has not comprehensively evaluated all the BIF occurrences within the tenement, at least two targets were highlighted for additional follow-up work concurrently with the maiden drilling campaign.
Alien completed maiden drilling in March 2021, with 53 Reverse Circulation (RC) holes for 3,350m of shallow drilling across priority High Grade Direct Shipping Ore (“DSO”) targets. Three main target areas drilled Sirius Extension, Kalgan and Western Ridges (Ridge C, D and E). Maiden drilling confirmed four high grade DSO iron ore prospects across the Hancock tenement.
Phase 2 drilling completed in June 2021, with 40 Reverse Circulation (“RC”) holes for 2,175m, three main target areas drilled Sirius Extensions, Ridges C and E part of the Western Ridges. A new target was discovered during drilling Krill Back southeast of Sirius Extension.
Phase 3 drilling identified extensions to the existing Inferred Resource, 43 holes for 1,146m were drilled to target extensions to known deposits and infill drilling on existing JORC inferred Resource of 10.4Mt @ 60.4% Fe, 17 of the 46 RC holes returned excellent high grade intersections. Excellent in-fill and extension results form Ridge C and E resources, consistent grades of over 62% (Fe), with low levels of deleterious elements
Phase 3 results
|Hole||Intersection (m)||Fe %||From (m)|