African -focused iron ore explorer Waratah Resources has announced updated drilling results and development progress at its Youkou iron ore project.
The Youkou project is on the Ivindo Massif in the north west of the Democratic Republic of Congo and hosts a number of large-scale iron ore development areas.
Since two company-owned and operated diamond drill rigs began work on site in late January, 13 holes have been completed totalling more than 649m of drilling.
Waratah reported that a significant new area of potential iron ore mineralisation was encountered in hole YKD033, where mineralisation was discovered from 0m to 63m at 37 per cent iron, including 15m at 44 per cent, using the hand-held Niton XRF.
“This hole is significant as it is further to the north and east of…previous drilling,” the company stated. “Initial independent assay results for the remaining drill-holes are currently with the ALS laboratory in Johannesburg and will be reported as soon as they become available.”
Waratah managing director William Witham said drilling had continued on site despite the wet season, with ongoing exploration results indicating that the project consisted of both DSO material and iron ore that could be beneficiated.
“To help increase the drilling rate, another track mounted drill rig has been purchased and is expected to commence working on site in the September 2012 quarter,” Mr Witham said.
“We will be also moving the rigs 5 kilometres south from the current drilling area with the aim of confirming the strike and composition of the banded iron formation and speed up our ability to reach our target resource.”
Waratah acquired a majority interest in Youkou in October 2010, when it purchased a 90 per cent stake in the project’s owner Afriresources Congo S.A.
“A metallogenic map of the project area indicates an iron quartz schist of approximately 20km in strike length,” Waratah reported at the time. “The local geology compares favourably with other nearby projects.”