Plato Gold Corp. (TSX-V: PGC) (Plato or the Corporation) is pleased to announce the assay results from its recent diamond drilling program on the Good Hope Niobium Property in the Killala Lake and Cairngorm Lake Areas of northwestern Ontario. The property, which consists of 254 mining claims covering an area of approximately 5,100 hectares, is located approximately 45 kilometres northwest of the town of Marathon, Ontario.
In May 2018, Plato completed 5016 metres of diamond drilling on the Good Hope Property. The drilling focused on outcropping mineralization at Site 28 in the northwestern part of the property and encompassed an area of approximately 500m by 500m (see Figure 3). All holes were drilled in a northwesterly direction. The nine completed drill holes ranged in length from 372 to 672 metres, testing the area to a vertical depth of between 285 and 580 metres (see Press Release dated 6 June 2018 for drill collar information). All holes intersected zones (up to 27m wide) of massive carbonatite within a brecciated system consisting of variably fenitized syenite/quartz-syenite intruded by carbonatite dykes and crosscutting carbonatite veins. Although the brecciated nature of the host rocks makes any orientation or trend of mineralization difficult to determine, the intersection of massive carbonatite in every drill hole from surface up to approximately 500m depth suggests that significant potential exists for niobium mineralization over a large area.
Assays of the drill core samples collected from the program peaked at 0.950% niobium (Nb2O5) with 6.20% phosphorus (P2O5) over 1.1m in a sample of massive carbonatite (PGH-18-06, 382.94-384.04m; see Table 1).
The two most significant intersections from the drilling program were 0.190% Nb2O5 and 2.04% P2O5 over 93.08m (drill hole PGH-18-06; 354.18-447.26m) and 0.175% Nb2O5 and 2.03% P2O5 over 89.24m (drill hole PGH-18-10A; 345.0-434.24m) (see Table 1).
Dr. Roger Mitchell of Lakehead University is undertaking a petrographic study of core samples from the recent drill program and has made the following observations:
The ore mineral of the Good Hope carbonatite, in common with all other niobium producing carbonatites, is pyrochlore. The high density and coarse grain size of the Good Hope pyrochlores, along with an association with acid soluble inclusions and host carbonates may be very favourable for simplifying of ore beneficiation processes.
Pyrochlore is a sodium (Na)- and calcium (Ca)- bearing niobium (Nb) oxide with the simplified composition of (NaCa)Nb2O7. The majority of the Good Hope pyrochlores are typically of relatively uniform composition and contain on average about 70 wt.% Nb2O5 with 1-2 wt.% strontium oxide (SrO) and barium oxide (BaO). Minor variations in composition range from these dominant normal Na-Ca-pyrochlores to Na- and Ca-poor (1-4 wt.% Na2O) varieties also with 70 wt.% Nb2O5. Replacement of both types of pyrochlores by trace amounts of Sr-rich varieties with 4-6 wt.% SrO, 1-8 wt.% BaO, less than 1 wt.% UO3, and no detectable ThO2 are also present. Some pyrochlores have been replaced in part by fersmite [CaNb2O6 with approximately 58 wt.% Nb2O5] or ferrocolumbite [FeNb2O6] with c. 79 wt.% Nb2O5].
The pyrochlores commonly co-exist with the phosphorus (P) bearing mineral apatite [Ca5(PO4)3(OH,F,Cl)] and appear to form clasts derived from an earlier stage apatite-pyrochlore cumulate body. These clasts have commonly been disaggregated resulting in the liberation of the pyrochlores from the apatite into the matrix of the diverse later stage carbonate minerals which make up the carbonatite intrusion.
The pyrochlores exhibit a very wide range in size, mainly from 100 microns to 1 mm, with some crystals being up to 5 mm in maximum dimension. The majority are euhedral, not resorbed and of relatively uniform composition. Inclusions when present are of apatite, and/or diverse carbonates.
Dr. Mitchell states that compared with other carbonatites currently being evaluated for their niobium potential the Good Hope prospect has significant potential because of favourable mineralogy and infrastructure.
I am very pleased with the results of this drill program, said Anthony J. Cohen, President of Plato Gold Corp. The large area of massive carbonatites and breccias suggest that there is much more area to explore with this near to surface project, that is located close to unparalleled infrastructure. The future demand for niobium is growing with all of its important new uses and it is fortunate to have this project located in the Province of Ontario.
Approximately 2150 metres or 40% of all drill core was sampled. A total of 2081 drill core samples from the program were submitted to Activation Laboratories (ActLabs) in Thunder Bay, Ontario and analyzed for niobium using a fusion XRF method. Samples from holes PGH-18-01 through PGH-18-03 were also analyzed for a whole rock and trace element ICP analytical package. Samples from holes PGH-18-04 onwards were submitted for an XRF package designed for coltan deposits which included Ta, Nb, U, Th, Zr, Fe, P, Sn, Y, and W oxides. An internal Quality Control Quality Assurance (QAQC) program was implemented with an additional 168 QAQC samples (blanks, reference standards, and duplicates) also being submitted for analysis.
Plato has contracted an independent mining and geological consulting firm to review the data from the recent program and help with planning of the next phase of drilling to help move the project forward. The next phase of the program may include infill drilling and sampling, extension of the drilling pattern to the west and north, and drilling of other target areas.
Laura Giroux, Msc., P.Geo., a Qualified Person as defined by NI 43-101, is responsible for the technical information contained in this news release and has reviewed and approved its content.
About Dr. Roger Mitchell
Dr. Roger Mitchell is Professor Emeritus of Geology at Lakehead University, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and is a recognized international authority on the petrology and mineralogy of diamond-bearing rocks (kimberlites; Lamproites) and carbonatites. He has acted as a consultant to many major and junior mining exploration companies. With respect to carbonatites he has authored many significant publications in international refereed periodicals (Lithos; Ore Geology Reviews) on the mineralogy and petrology of Nb-bearing carbonatites.
About Plato Gold Corp.
Plato Gold Corp. is a Canadian exploration company listed on the TSX Venture Exchange with projects in Marathon Ontario, Timmins, Ontario and Santa Cruz, Argentina.
The Good Hope Niobium Project consists of a total of 254 mining claims covering approximately 5,100 hectares in Killala Lake Area and Cairngorm Lake Area, near Marathon Ontario. In May 2017, Plato signed an option agreement with Rudy Wahl and co-owners to acquire 100% interest in the Good Hope Property.
The Timmins Ontario project includes 4 properties: Guibord, Harker, Holloway and Marriott in the Harker/Holloway gold camp located east of Timmins, Ontario. Plato holds 50% interest in the Guibord property with the remaining 50% held by Osisko Mining Inc. (Osisko). Osisko also holds 80% interest in the Harker property with Plato holding the remaining 20%.
In Argentina, Plato owns a 75% interest in Winnipeg Minerals S.A. (WMSA), an Argentina incorporated company. The Lolita Property, held by WMSA, is comprised of a number of contiguous mineral rights totaling 9,672 hectares. Work has advanced on this exploration property to the point that it is drill-ready or ready to be optioned to a partner.
This article provided by NewsEdge.