Location and Tenements
The Laverton Project tenements cover an extensive area around the town of Laverton in the north-eastern part of the Archaean Yilgarn Craton in Western Australia. Panoramic owns 100% of the Ni-Cu-PGM rights in the tenements. Under a Joint Venture Agreement executed in December 2011, Poseidon Nickel Limited may earn an initial 60% interest in part of this project by spending $3 million within 3 years.
The project contains a number of strike-extensive ultramafic units, many of which are interpreted to be komatiites, prospective for nickel sulphide mineralization. The historic Windarra and South Windarra nickel mines occur immediately adjacent and to the northwest of the project area at the base of the Windarra Ultramafic Unit. At least two of the main komatiite units within the project, the Red Flag Ultramafic Unit and Lancefield Ultramafic Unit, are adjacent to, and within the same part of the greenstone sequence as, the Windarra Ultramafic Unit. These prospective komatiites, which have a combined strike length of approximately 60km, are mostly covered by transported regolith and have not been systematically explored for nickel.
Geology, Exploration History and Targets
The Mount Windarra nickel deposit was discovered by Poseidon NL in 1969 by surface prospecting during a boom in nickel exploration in Australia in the late 1960’s and early 1970’s. The South Windarra deposit was discovered in 1971 beneath transported overburden by a consortium of Union Oil, Australian Hanna and Homestake by drill testing a magnetic anomaly. Western Mining Corporation Ltd subsequently mined the deposits between 1974-78 and 1981-91 and extracted approximately 7.2Mt at 1.6% Ni for 85,000t of nickel recovered. Poseidon Nickel Limited is currently re-developing the Windarra nickel mine.
Ultramafic volcanic and intrusive rocks are abundant within the greenstone sequence in the Laverton area and are highly prospective for nickel deposits; however, they are largely covered and their extents are interpreted from aeromagnetic data and previous mainly shallow drilling.
Most of the previous exploration for nickel on the tenements was undertaken in the nickel boom of the late 1960’s and early 1970’s which identified several promising prospects. The effectiveness of much of this work was constrained by relatively primitive exploration technology, limited knowledge of komatiite-hosted nickel sulphide mineralisation and regolith geology combined with poor rock exposure and deep weathering. The opportunity in this project is to apply modern exploration knowledge and technology to the known prospects and the large strike extents of these ultramafic units about which little is known.
The Red Flag unit has a strike length of approximately 40km within the project area, most of which lies beneath sand plain and salt lake sediment cover. The unit has been interpreted as a thrust-fault repeated equivalent of the Windarra Ultramafic Unit or alternatively a different flow package within the same stratigraphic sequence. Whichever interpretation is correct, the prospectivity of the units for discovery of nickel sulphide deposits is based on their komatiite lithology and the presence of a favourable sulphidic sedimentary substrate over parts of their strike extents.
A major LANDTEM geophysical survey has been completed to map the distribution of electro-magnetic conductors, potentially reflecting nickel-sulphide mineralisation, over much of the 40km strike length of the Red Flag ultramafic unit. Many conductors were identified from this survey, several of which remain to be tested by drilling.