Prize Mining’s (PRZ.V) drill program on the Manto Negro copper project is in full swing, and the company has now released the assay results for the first four holes of the program. Two of these holes were drilled on the so-called Pilar Grande zone, which hosts a past-producing high-grade copper mine and returned intervals of 4.1 and 3.5 meters at an average grade of respectively 0.88% copper and 49g/t silver and 1.58% copper and 122 g/t silver.
Don’t be surprised by the relatively short mineralized intervals, as that’s quite typical for these types of copper deposits: they cover a very large surface area (the strike length of the Pilar Grande mine has now been expanded to four kilometers), while the mineralization appears to be squeezed in a relatively thin but high-grade layer. Just to give you an idea of the value of the rock: the ‘worst’ interval at Pilar Grande (the 0.88% copper hole) has a gross rock value of US$75/t using a copper price of $2.75 and a silver price of $14. Of course, a gross rock value is per definition meaningless until you know the results of the metallurgical test work, but it does give a good initial indication.
Two other holes were drilled on the El Granizo zone, and these returned results that are very consistent with the Pilar Grande grades: intervals of 3.55 and 4.4 meters at an average grade of 1.69% copper and just over 1% copper, and 0.9 ounces of silver per tonne of rock as a potential by-product credit. Drilling is ongoing with three drill rigs, and Prize still has to report on the assay results of an additional 26 holes (13 holes at each of the Pilar Grande and El Granizo zones).
Meanwhile, Prize also reported on the assay results of another channel sampling program in an area approximately 1.6 kilometers north of Pilar Grande. It was able to trace the same copper mineralization over a length of 200 meters, and sampled high-grade copper and silver (2.13% copper and 63 g/t silver) with an average thickness of 3.41 meters.