Nickel-Copper-PGE Projects (Venus 100%)
Venus is actively exploring two project areas within the West Yilgarn Ni-Cu-PGE Province:
· Barrabarra North Project adjacent to Chalice’s Barrabarra Project
· Bridgetown East Project adjacent to Chalice’s and Venture’s South West Project.
Location of Venus’ Barrabarra North and Bridgetown East Projects and Chalice Mining Ltd’s Project areas within the West Yilgarn Ni-Cu-PGE Province (modified after CHN ASX release 8 September 2021)
Barrabarra North - (100% Venus):
Venus’ Barrabarra North Cu-Ni-PGE project is located in the northwest of the Yilgarn Craton and comprises five exploration licence applications (ELA59/2548, ELA70/5786, ELA70/5787, ELA70/5912 and ELA70/5913) for a total of 986km2; it abuts Chalice Mining Limited’s (Chalice) Barrabarra Project (refer CHN ASX 21 July 2020). The project area falls within the West Yilgarn Ni-Cu-PGE Province first outlined by Chalice (refer CHN ASX release 4 May 2021) that covers an area of c. 1,200km X 100km and extends from the Narryer Terrane in the north to the South West Terrane in the south.
Venus identified prospective target areas at its Barrabarra North Project near Chalice’ tenure based on the Laterite geochemical database for the western Yilgarn Craton (YLA) published by the Geological Survey of Western Australia (GeoView website). In the southern part of ELA 59/2548, concentrations of 4,410 ppm chromium (Cr), and 10.5 ppb and 12.5 ppb of palladium (Pd) and platinum (Pt) respectively are reported in YLA laterite sample #101216; in the central part of Venus’ Barrabarra North Project, YLA laterite sample #101358 has 300 ppm Cr, 82 ppm copper (Cu), 13 ppb Pt and 16.4 ppb Pd. These concentrations are anomalous in laterite and may indicate the presence of mafic and/or ultramafic bedrock within the dominantly granitic terrain. Mafic-ultramafic intrusive rocks may, potentially, be sulphide-bearing and hosting Cu-Ni-PGE mineralisation of the Julimar type discovered by Chalice.
In ELA 59/2548, a west-northwest trending 1.9 km long soil traverse overlaps the location of YLA laterite sample #101216 (4,400 ppm Cr). The soils show very high Cr concentrations (max. 3,169 ppm) over a 400-500 m interval and highly anomalous Cu concentrations in most samples along the traverse (max. 45.8 ppm Cu). Nickel, Pt and Pd are also anomalous with maxima of 63 ppm, 9 ppb and 4 ppb respectively. Soil samples were taken from c. 0.5m depth and sieved to +1.6 and -5 mm, the same soil fraction used by Chalice for its regional geochemical surveys. *According to Chalice “values above 80 ppm Ni, 20 ppm Cu and 5 ppb Pd are considered highly anomalous” in soil (refer CHN ASX release 9 June 2021).
In ELA70/5787, soil sampling was completed along an 800 m long traverse to test anomalous Pt-Pd-Cu concentrations in YLA laterite sample 101358. Two samples at the eastern end of the traverse show highly anomalous Pd (max. 6 ppb) and Cu (max. 42 ppm) and this anomaly remains open to the north, south and east (refer ASX release 5 October 2021).
Location plan showing Venus’ Exploration Licence Applications (ELAs), Venus sample locations and Chalice’s tenure.
BRIDGETOWN EAST - (100% Venus):
The project covers the northern part of the ‘Julimar lookalike’ Ni-Cu-PGE target, an approximately 20km long interpreted mafic-ultramafic complex with a strong magnetic signature (Chalice ASX release 21 July 2020) and electromagnetic highs that may indicate bedrock-hosted sulphide mineralisation.
Illustrating the prospectivity of the area is a JV between Chalice Gold Mines (ASX CHN) and Venture Minerals (Chalice may earn up to a 70% interest by spending $3.7 million on exploration over 4 years) that will explore Venture’s Southwest Project for Julimar-style mineralisation and will cover the Thor prospect which intersected 2.4m of massive sulphide averaging 0.5% Cu with 0.05% Ni, 0.04% Co and anomalous Au & Pd (VMS and CHN ASX releases 21 July 2020)
Initial surface geochemistry (rock chip and laterite data) combined with historical data identified several target areas for potential mafic-ultramafic hosted Ni-Cu-Pt-Pd mineralisation. One of these areas, Target 1 in the east of E70/5315, coincides with an aeromagnetic high and a HEM anomaly (refer ASX release 7 December 2020). Follow-up soil sampling (Phase 1) detected anomalous concentrations of Pt, Pd and base metals (in the ultrafine soil fraction) in Target Area 1 (refer ASX release 29 April 2021) where mafic-ultramafic intrusive rocks crop out nearby.
Recently, a Phase 2 soil geochemical survey tested units of interpreted or mapped mafic-ultramafic rocks within E70/5315 and E70/5316. Anomalous Pt concentrations together with elevated Pd, Cu and Ni (with maxima of 5160ppm Ni, 462ppm Cu, 27ppb Pt and 48ppb Pd) in the south of E70/5315 outline an additional priority target (Target 5) for base metals - PGE mineralisation (refer ASX release 24 September 2021).
A moving loop electromagnetic (MLEM) survey commenced at the first of four Venus target areas (Target 1 to 4) with anomalous PGE - base metal geochemistry and associated with previously defined airborne Heli-electromagnetic (HEM) anomalies (refer ASX release 27 September 2018). The results show a mid to late time response, centred on 430,250mE along the northernmost line of the survey, that remains open to the north (refer ASX release 24 September 2021). This mid to late time response is located along the edge of the previously defined HEM anomaly and adjacent to a magnetic anomaly.
Due to the recent high rainfall within the project area and local geological conditions, the EM survey displays IP effects that are affecting the data. This has made it difficult to complete the modelling of the reported anomalies and requires further investigation to fully resolve. This will be best achieved when ground conditions have suitably improved and by adopting an alternative Fixed Loop or Moving Loop survey design.
Location of Bridgetown East Ni-Cu-PGE project area, soil samples and initial ground EM survey areas.
Chalice's Julimar an South West Projects Aeromagnetic Signatures