Lion One Metals Limited: First Phase Exploration and Trenching Results From Tuvatu High Grade Gold Project, Viti Levu, Fijiadmin
Lion One Metals Limited, further to its press releases dated February 14 and 16, 2011, is pleased to report the first set of results for the trenching program on the Tuvatu High-Grade Gold Project (“Tuvatu” or the “Project”) in the Sabeto Valley on the island of Viti Levu in Fiji. Highlights include five samples returning grades over 100 g/t, including one selected sample that returned 1,715 g/t Au. The accompanying table of analytical results reports selected results from the 1,000 meter trenching program. Over 800 samples were taken with approximately 450 pending. The first batch of samples are predominately from four benches and two trenches excavated adjacent to, and directly south of the portal of the existing decline between the Core Shed Fault (CSF) and the Tuvatu and H Lodes. It is important to note that while numerous high grade gold surface intervals were encountered in the program, the mineralization encountered in this zone only accounted for a nominal proportion of the total mineral resources included in both historical and current resource estimates, the most recent completed in October 2010. As a result, once the necessary trenching, core relogging, re-sampling and drilling programs have been completed, and Company geologists and consultants have had an opportunity to assess the data and information, the Company will be better able to refine the geological model and controls on both the high grade and lower grade mineralization identified to date. Management believes this program has the potential to significantly expand the total current mineral resource without an extensive drill program.
Rationale for the Program:
Drilling completed by previous operators yielded several near surface high gold intervals in the northern portion of the Tuvatu Resource area. Due to generally depressed precious metal prices of the day and prior emphasis on the high-grade underground resources, these results were not generally pursued nor were they considered in previous historical resource estimates. A total of 116 detailed north-south and east-west sections were completed at 20 m intervals over the Tuvatu resource area. These sections identified several high grade gold intersections in shallow drill holes completed in the northern portion of the Tuvatu Resource Area. The goal of the trenching program is to assess the near surface, open pit potential in the Tuvatu North area. The Company has plans to follow the trenching with a drill program consisting of short to moderate depth holes.
General Trenching and Sampling Methodology:
Excavations from the trenching program were completed across the Core Shed Fault, with subsequent trenching completed above the surface expression of the Tuvatu (1 and 2) and H Lodes. Trenches were up to 2 m deep with an average of 1.5 m. Several benches along road cuts were also sampled as a part of the program. Most samples were continuous or semi continuous chip samples with composite samples taken when necessary.
Summary of 1st Phase Trenching Program
Trenching Results – Benches BE11-01& BE11-02& Trenches TR11-0& TR11-02:
Trench TR11-01: Excavated across a section of the Core Shed Fault. The balance of the samples consist of single chips taken across a number of cm-scale vein structures of varying orientation hosted in intensely clay-weathered monzonite. Bench BE11-06 was also excavated over the Core Shed Fault, west of TR11-01. Sampling there will provide additional verification of the grade tenor of the Core Shed structure.
Trench TR11-02: Excavated on higher ground immediately north of the Core Shed Fault. This excavation contained several examples of northeast, northwest, and east-west steeply and shallowly-dipping alteration zones and quartz-clay-sulphide (+/- magnetite and biotite)-bearing veinlets in monzonite. A 2.0 m wide structure strikes northeastward and dips steeply eastward. It consists of a strongly altered, clay-weathered, rusty alteration zone cored and bounded by cm-scale quartz-sulphide-bearing veinlets. This structure is considered part of the Murau Lode system. Another 0.5 m width of similar composition strikes north-northwest and dips steeply southwest. These two structures are projected to intersect each other just to the east of the existing trench wall.
Bench BE11-01: Consists of two separate but proximal excavations in an old drill road bank south of the Core Shed Fault. BE11-01N was excavated in highly to pervasively clay-weathered intrusive rock. Weathering makes it difficult to confirm rock composition however the original rock is believed to be brecciated monzonite or volcanic. Massive monzonite is located in the eastern part. Fine, randomly distributed, rusty iron oxide and biotite-bearing veinlets are present in places but are more notable in the eastern section of the excavation. A 2.0 m wide, intensely clay-altered zone strikes northwest and dips steeply south. BE11-01S contains clay weathered, weakly-altered monzonite. A well-defined 0.2 to 0.7 m wide structure was exposed consisting of strong clay and limonite-weathered, former feldspar alteration cored and bounded by quartz-sulphide-bearing veinlets. Two samples TS00871 and TS00873 contain 4.62 and 0.56 g/t Au respectively. This zone is believed to be an extension of the Murau Lodes. Its location north of the Core Shed Fault implies that the Murau Lodes like the Upper Ridges Lodes extend through this older structure.
Bench BE11-02: Two sections of excavated-cleaned road cut. The first or western portion (BE11-02W) strikes east-northeast. The eastern part (BE11–02E) strikes north-northwest. The excavation was designed to expose the Tuvatu/H and UR Lodes north of the Core Shed Fault. A total of 158 samples were taken on BE11-02. Samples consist of continuous sub horizontal 1 m wide, semi-contiguous single or composite chip samples. The material includes rusty-coloured, pervasively clay-weathered breccia and moderately to intensely hydrothermally altered monzonite. Northwest-striking centimeter-scale veinlets and larger poddy patches of biotite-quartz-feldspar with sulphide are present. Locally, relict textures suggest that the intrusive may have been brecciated. Near the eastern end of the Bench veining is more prevalent in what was strongly altered monzonite. Vein structures vary from mm-scale to several centimeters thick and tend to intersect with minimal or no offset. Significant Au results were obtained in samples taken between 23 and 28 m adjacent to the faulted intrusive. Samples TS00885, TS00886, TS00887, TS00888 and TS00889 represent a 4.8 m wide section that contains between 1.28 and 21.80 g/t Au. The weighted average grade is 8.7 g/t Au in this interval. This high grade interval appears to be the surface expression of the north-west striking Tuvatu Lode. Similar styles of mineralization have been exposed on benches down slope to the north. Sample results for these occurrences are pending.
With the exception of a 10 m section in its northern portion of the excavation, the vein density in BE11-02E is very high with veins ranging from mm-scale to 0.5 m in width. Vein orientation is variable with numerous north-west, north, and east-west trending structures. Both steep and shallow-dipping veins are well represented. Shearing and attendant offsets were present on some structures. Vein mineralogy varies with narrower magnetite-biotite and thicker quartz, feldspar, sulphide structures. The host rock is moderately altered monzonite intrusive. The intensity of the hydrothermal alteration increases near vein envelopes. Pervasive clay-weathering obscures rock textures in the northern portion of the bench.
Samples were taken of individual and groups of veins and interstitial altered wall rock. Two high-grade Au results were obtained. The first high grade result, a quartz sulphide vein grades 23.90 g/t Au across 0.4 m. It is interpreted as the northerly extension of the UR2 Lode. The second result grades 76.0 g/t Au across a relatively flat vein 15 cm wide (TS00397). Two other samples of altered vein material hosted in monzonite contain material grading above 1 g/t Au (TS00406 and TS00411). Several other samples from this zone grade between 0.2 and 0.8 g/t Au. Analysis of the complete assay results from this zone will determine whether the eastern and western sections of the excavation contain material of sufficiently consistent grade to be amenable to surface mining methods.
To view Figure 1 please click on the following link: http://media3.marketwire.com/docs/LionFig1.pdf
Summary of Surface & Mapping Program
Several significant high grade-Au field samples were taken in the vicinity of recent excavations and within the area of the Tuvatu/H Lode. The most significant assay results were returned from 22 semi-contiguous chip samples (TS00670 to TS00691) located between approx.01876460 and 01876473E and approx.03921000-03921010N (UTM). These were taken on the corner of an old drill road bank just south of bench BE11-02. This was recently excavated as part of the emplacement of trench TR11-04 and bench BE11-04E (see V-shaped array on location map). Fourteen samples (TS00670 to TS00683), ranging in length from 0.1 to 0.9 m for an aggregate length of 7.8 m, are arrayed southeast and form the western leg of the V. Eleven samples ranging in grade from 2.63 to greater than 100 g/t Au are present in this set. The eastern leg of the V pattern consists of an array of 8 semi-contiguous chip samples (TS00684 to TS00691) over a length of 4.5 m with grades varying between 0.43 and 188.0 g/t; 7 of 8 contain Au in amounts greater than 8 g/t. The high-grade samples are from fracture controlled alteration and shearing in monzonite. Quartz-carbonate +/- magnetite veining is present.
This occurrence of high-grade Au is located adjacent to, and over a northwest-striking, strongly-altered, sulphide-bearing, coarse-grained biotite band cut by trench TR11-04. This latter is the characteristic core mineralization of the Tuvatu Lode. However, the fracture and vein attitudes from this high grade sample site suggest that the Au is not necessarily related to the Tuvatu Lode but may be at least partially contained within flat and north-striking steeply-dipping vein structures similar to the occurrences described in BE11-02. This group of veins has displayed high grades in other locations and the very high grades found at this particular site could represent Au enrichment in an area of cross cutting flat and steep structures. The flat-lying structures are analogous to those found in the GRF and SKL Lodes and the steep north-striking ones are similar to the Upper Ridges Lodes described by previous work. These vein sets may not be exactly contemporaneous with the formation of the porphyry-like Tuvatu Lode alteration and mineralization. Instead, these former likely comprise a slightly later overprint produced by extended tectonic deformation which further enriched select portions of the Tuvatu/H Lode. The occurrences of high-grade Au mineralization appear to represent localized knots formed by intersecting vein sets superimposed on the Tuvatu Lode. The very high grade found here makes a potential target for small-scale pit extraction. The possibility of supergene enrichment of Au at such sites must also be considered.
A 0.3 m long, 13.85 g/t Au chip sample (TS00697) was taken in a road bank to the south of the V-shaped set. The sample was taken from a northeast-striking moderately steeply south-dipping quartz-sulphide-bearing vein. Its northward extension leads into the high-grade Au occurrence described above.
Other more isolated higher-grade chip samples were taken in the area of the Tuvatu/H Lode. An assay of 6.97 g/t Au was returned from one 0.64 m wide chip sample (TS00855). This sample is part of a set of 6 continuous chip samples taken over 4 m across a northeast-striking sheared dike contact within monzonite. It lies within the broad outline of the Tuvatu/H Lodes and illustrates the control of structure (fracture sets, veining, lithologic contacts and faulting) on Au mineralization within the broader alteration envelope of the lode.
Another sample TS00669 yielded 8.66 g/t. It is of 1 m width and part of a 3.75 m composite chip sample taken across an altered, northwest striking dike contact within monzonite. The other samples in the composite series contain between 0.5 and 1.2 g/t Au. The higher Au occurrence here is the likely product of mineralization and alteration being controlled by northwest-oriented internal diking within the monzonite. A 0.25 m wide chip sample (TS00700) was taken across a quartz-sulphide stringer about 20 meters north of trench TR11-02. Gold concentration is reported as 27.5 g/t. It is located within highly clay-weathered monzonite cut by the east-west-striking Core Shed Fault. Its attitude suggests it is an Upper Ridges-type vein structure, which cuts the Core Shed Fault. Its southern extension may join other veining exposed in TR11-02.
To view Figure 2 please click on the following link: http://media3.marketwire.com/docs/LionFig2.pdf
Geology and Au-Grade Relationships
Returns from Batch 016 suggest the presence of several important relationships between geologic structure and Au grades.
High-grade Au sample results have been obtained from the strong to intense mineralized core of the Tuvatu Lode in bench BE11-02W. This core band consists of variable volumes of patchy quartz, biotite, feldspar and magnetite accompanied by sulphide. It appears to be controlled by northwest-oriented internal contacts or dikes within monzonite.
High-grades of Au are also contained within sub-horizontal and north-striking steeply-dipping vein sets. The north-striking ones are related to or represent the northern extension of the Upper Ridges Lodes exemplified by the UR1, UR2, and URW veins. These structures tend to be relatively wider, better developed, and more continuous – some to distances of hundreds of metres. They contain infillings of hydrothermal quartz and significant sulphide (up to several percent), many have experienced some shearing along them, and the wider amongst them tend to display relatively consistent anomalous to higher Au grades compared to other vein sets.
Occurrences of elevated Au concentration were also reported from quartz-sulphide-bearing flat-lying veins. The geometry of the flat veins is the product of horizontally directed compressional tectonic stress producing sub-horizontal fracturing adjacent to large discontinuities in the rock mass. Given their quartz-sulphide-rich make-up and sporadic high grades, a portion has received the benefit of concentrated hydrothermal activity; this is likely due to their close spatial association and cross-cutting of other steeply dipping veins, faults, and lithologic contacts, which served as their plumbing.
High to very high grades of Au were reported from 11 field samples at one site that has since been overlapped by trench TR11-04 and bench BE11-04. This occurrence of high-grade Au mineralization appears to be the product of flat and steeply-dipping, fracture-controlled alteration and veining that overlaps the Tuvatu Lode. The very high Au grade from these chip samples could be the product of prolonged hydrothermal enrichment over time in a localized area of intersecting vein sets superimposed on the Tuvatu Lode.
While only a portion of the assays and analytical results from the current trenching program have been received, the surface expressions and the high grade tenure of the Tuvatu and H Lodes have been confirmed. In addition, and possibly more importantly, a broad zone of potassic and phyllic alteration typical of porphyry type environments, measuring approximately 400 m by 30 to 100 m has been outlined (see Figures 1 and 2). With the current understanding of the geological model, it is expected that this alteration zone will expand at depth as the source of the hydrothermal fluids and mineralization is approached.
The surface sampling and mapping program has confirmed the existence of zones of surface mineralization with numerous samples grading in excess of 1.00 g/t Au measuring at least 800 m by 600 m (see Figure 1 and Appendix “2″). Less than half of this area reflects the surface expression of the current Tuvatu resource. As a result, Lion One technical staff believe, there is significant potential for the expansion of the existing resource as the deposit and the controls over mineralization are better understood. In addition, technical staff also believe, there is significant potential for the expansion of the resource north of the Core Shed Fault and generally associated with the Tuvatu and H Lodes either on surface or underground.
While the surface potential of the Tuvatu North zone cannot be readily determined from the work completed and the results obtained to date, the high grade nature and continuity of the gold mineralization exposed on surface, in drill holes and the decline are encouraging. In addition the number of samples returning grades between 0.5 and 3.0 g/t Au, the cut-off grade for historical resource estimates, lends credence to the bulk tonnage potential of the zone. The re-logging and re-sampling of the more than 60,000 m of the core on-site will be instrumental in assessing not only the surface and underground potential of the Tuvatu North Zone but the entire deposit. Once all analytical and assay results are received, the Company will consolidate the information gained from the current trenching program with that from the historical results with the intention of identifying drill targets to further assess the surface potential of the North Zone.
Darcy Krohman, P.Geo, a Qualified Person for the Company under the meaning of Canadian National Instrument 43-101, has reviewed the technical information in this news release.