Ivanhoe Electric reports 'significant' resource upgrade at its Santa Cruz copper project in Arizona
(Kitco News) - Ivanhoe Electric (NYSE: IE; TSX: IE) announced Tuesday that total contained copper in indicated resources across all deposits and domains at the Santa Cruz copper project in Arizona increased by 11%, with a near-doubling of the copper cut-off grade to a minimum of 0.70%.
Importantly, the company reported a 65% increase in tonnage and 82% increase in total contained copper in indicated resources across Exotic, Oxide and Enriched domains at the Santa Cruz deposit.
The company said that the updated mineral resource estimate now includes the first mineral resources declared at the East Ridge deposit directly adjacent to the Santa Cruz deposit and at the Texaco deposit approximately one mile to the northeast.
Using a 0.70% copper cut-off grade, indicated mineral resources at the Santa Cruz project total 226.7 million tonnes grading 1.24% total copper (2.8 million tonnes of contained copper), and inferred resources total 149.0 million tonnes grading 1.24% total copper (1.8 million tonnes of contained copper).
The company added that the Santa Cruz deposit remains the largest deposit at the Santa Cruz project with indicated mineral resources totaling 223.2 million tonnes grading 1.24% total copper and inferred mineral resources totaling 62.7 million tonnes grading 1.23% total copper.
"Importantly, the Santa Cruz deposit now includes 78% indicated resources at higher average grades than the previous estimate, which will form the base for the upcoming initial assessment / preliminary economic assessment,” Ivanhoe said.
With a specific focus on expanding the higher-grade areas of the Santa Cruz deposit (greater than 1.2% total copper within the Exotic, Oxide, and Chalcocite Enriched domains), the company said it has successfully improved the indicated resources tonnage in these domains within the Santa Cruz deposit by 65%.
The average copper grade of indicated resources in these domains at the Santa Cruz deposit increased by 10%, contributing to an 82% increase in contained copper metal, it said.
"These important domains host the high-grade soluble copper minerals that will be the central focus of the Santa Cruz initial assessment / preliminary economic assessment,” the company noted in a statement.
"Even at these higher cut-off grades, the overall project-wide contained copper in indicated mineral resources increased by 11%. Importantly, project-wide contained copper in indicated mineral resources, excluding primary sulfide mineralization, increased by 86%. The updated resource provides an excellent foundation for our initial economic assessment, which we expect before the end of Q3 2023,” Ivanhoe said.
Ivanhoe Electric is an American technology and mineral exploration company that is re-inventing mining for the electrification of everything by combining advanced mineral exploration technologies, renewable energy storage solutions and electric metals projects predominantly located in the United States.
The company advances its portfolio of electric metals projects located primarily in the United States, headlined by the Santa Cruz copper project in Arizona and the Tintic copper-gold project in Utah, as well as projects in Montana, Oregon and North Carolina.
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