Avrupa Minerals (AVU.V) released the assay results of its 6-hole drill program at the Sesmarias prospect on the Alvalade license in Portugal earlier this week. As this still is an early stage exploration project, we obviously weren’t expecting Avrupa to encounter mineralization in every hole, and three holes (26,27,29) intersected a horizon of quartz-sulphide (predominantly iron) veining a few dozen meters above the 10-lens. This zone didn’t carry any grade, but according to Avrupa’s interpretation, the layer of iron sulphide could indicate there’s an additional mineral layer at the Sesmarias Massive Sulphide system.
What we were really interested about was the so-called 10 lens, where previous drill programs encountered for instance 51.7 meters at 0.40 g/t gold, 0.44% copper, almost 3.5% ZnPb and 17.35 g/t silver as well as 52 meters at 0.62 g/t gold, 1.47% ZnPb, 0.43% copper and 17.31 g/t silver. Avrupa wanted to test the strike length of this 10-lense to build tonnage as the thickness of 20-50 meters in the previous drill holes was very encouraging.
Hole 26 confirmed the 10 lens appears to be much larger than originally thought, and interestingly, the hole seems to contain two adjacent zones of mineralization with the upper layer containing higher copper values, while the lower zone saw a bump in the average gold grade to just over 1 g/t. Combining both zones, Avrupa hit 28.95 meters of 0.48% copper, 0.52% lead, 1.31% zinc, 15.7 g/t silver and 0.77 g/t gold. Using $1300 gold, $1.20 zinc, $0.95 lead, $2.80 copper and $15 silver, this results in a gross rock value of $115/t, which is very decent. Of course, a gross rock value is meaningless without knowing the metallurgical recoveries, but at least it gives you an indication of the value of Avrupa’s intercept.
This hole has now extended the size of the 10 lens to 600 by 300 by 25 meters, and using a specific gravity of 4 (after all, these are massive sulphides), this means the 10 lens now has a total tonnage of approximately 18 million tonnes, meeting the critical mass to make these lenses interesting. Of course, this doesn’t mean the entire lens contains economic-grade mineralization, but the Sesmarias prospect at least meets the size requirements. Also keep in mind the 26 Horizon located right above the 10 lens and the 02 lens which is almost at surface could help to build tonnage and provide early mill feed which could potentially help fund the underground development to reach the 10 Lens.
If there’s anything you need to take away from Avrupa’s update it’s A) the mineralization appears to continue and B) this could help Avrupa’s potential joint venture partner to finally commit to the project. The 10M EUR it would bring to the table to drill Alvalade would allow Avrupa to make a giant leap forward.