Rio Tinto and Antipa Minerals have updated the inferred mineral resource of the Calibre gold deposit by 62 per cent at the Citadel joint venture (JV) project in Western Australia.
Following drilling completed in 2020, the resource has been increased to 2.1 million ounces of gold (previously 1.3 million ounces) from 92 million tonnes.
The Calibre gold deposit is a 65/35 JV between Rio Tinto and Antipa, located 45 kilometres east of Rio’s Winu copper-gold-silver deposit in the Paterson Province.
Antipa managing director Roger Mason said the resource update was extremely significant for the exploration company.
“This outstanding result confirms that Calibre, which was discovered by Antipa, is a very large-scale gold-copper-silver mineral system with significant growth potential located in the rapidly advancing Tier 1 Paterson Province,” Mason said.
“The strategic significance of this deposit is supported by this year’s substantial $24.5 million Citadel project exploration program which has the potential to both further increase the project’s resources and enhance potential development options.”
The exploration program should continue to benefit Antipa as drilling is planned for the Calibre deposit as well as the Magnum deposit 1.3 kilometres away.
The Magnum deposit will contribute a further 340,000 ounces of gold to Antipa’s cause, plus 57,800 tonnes of copper and 511,000 ounces of silver.
Rio’s Winu project 45 kilometres away is scheduled for production by 2024 with its own inferred mineral resource of 503 million tonnes at 0,45 per cent copper equivalent.
In July 2020, Rio Tinto group executive Stephen McIntosh said the mining giant was taking a low-key approach to the Winu development.
“We’re taking a more agile and innovative approach at Winu, and are working on the studies for a small-scale, start-up operation focused on Winu’s higher-grade core as we take another step towards commercialising this deposit,” McIntosh said.
“We are also assessing options for future expansion in the Paterson region given the extent of mineralisation identified to date and our large land package.”