In case you missed the press release our partner, Fission Uranium, has started its $6.95 million summer exploration program at Patterson Lake South (PLS), which is host to a major new uranium discovery. What’s more, they have already hit with their first hole – approximately 85 m of mineralization, including 18.93 m of off-scale (>9999cps) as measured by a hand held scintillometer. PLS is immediately adjacent to the Patterson Lake (PLN) project that we recently partnered with Fission to explore. The discovery itself is just 5.7 km south of PLN. Check out the map on our project page and you’ll get a clear picture of each project location.
Why is this news important? Well, as the PLS discovery develops it tells us more about the geology of the under-explored western side of the Athabasca Basin in which PLN is also located. It’s worth noting that PLN is linked to the PLS project by a North-South structural trend and PLN has similar parallel Northeast-Southwest conductors and structural trends as the PLS discovery.
The most important fact is it features high grades (far in excess of the world average) at rare open-pittable depths. By far, the majority of the mineralization discovered so far is within just 100 m of surface. In my experience this is comfortably above the threshold for an economic open pit mine.
A discovery of this nature is by definition one of the most attractive out there because, in addition to the low production cost, it means a much faster turnaround in terms of putting the project into production. In my opinion, at a time when many experts are forecasting an upcoming uranium supply crunch, a high-grade uranium project that can go into production in a relatively short space of time is going to be sought after.
What’s particularly exciting for us at Azincourt is that as well as being on trend with PLS, exploration work carried out to date at PLN also suggests shallow depth mineralization. This map highlights exposed basement beneath glacial cover in the south of the project and large areas with targets less than 300 m below surface (yellow contour). This interpretation is based on compiled historical drilling in the area and highlights an interpreted post-Athabasca structure with tremendous vertical displacement – a key ingredient for this style of high grade uranium deposit.
If you check out our corporate presentation you can take a look at some of the historical work that has been carried out at PLN as well as get an idea of the work planned for later this year. But, in a nutshell, we will be working towards defining new and refining existing conductor targets and locating the structures in preparation for drill testing once freeze up hits.
Exciting times ahead for the under-explored western Athabasca Basin!
Ted O’Connor, Azincourt Uranium CEO