Aton Updates Results Of Underground And Surface Channel Sampling At Rodruin, Including Mineralised Intersections Including 25.5m @ 4.74 G/t Gold
Vancouver, 7 August 2018: Aton Resources Inc. (AAN: TSX-V) (“Aton” or the “Company”) is very pleased to provide investors with an update on exploration activities at the Rodruin prospect at the Company’s 100% owned Abu Marawat Concession (“Abu Marawat” or the “Concession”), located in the Eastern Desert of Egypt.
- Aton have recently completed an initial programme of surface channel and underground sampling at the Rodruin prospect, totaling 109 samples (84 channel samples from 7 profiles in the Aladdin’s Hill area, 9 underground samples from the ancient “Spiral Pit” underground working, and 16 QAQC samples). Channel sampling was undertaken along drill access road and pad cuttings, currently under construction ahead of the upcoming RC drilling programme;
- All the channel sample profiles returned Au(±Zn) mineralised intersections, which included 25.5m @ 4.74 g/t Au (profile ROC-004), 16.5m @ 2.15 g/t Au (profile ROC-006) and 28.0m @ 1.83 g/t Au (profile ROC-005);
- The results of the initial phase of channel sampling suggest that the mineralisation at Aladdin’s Hill consists of a high grade core of structurally controlled gold mineralisation and associated alteration, which was exploited in the main zone of ancient workings, within a much broader ‘background’ zone of lower grade Au(±Zn) mineralisation, hosted in both carbonate rocks and slates/metasediments;
- Individual channel and selective grab samples taken from underground at the deep Spiral Pit ancient mine working have returned assays including 35.3 g/t, 20.6 g/t and 14.85 g/t Au, and 37.9% and 20.7% Zn. The Spiral Pit area bears many similarities to the Aladdin’s Hill area;
- The multi-purpose drill rig has now arrived onsite ahead of the upcoming RC drilling programme.
“We are extremely encouraged by the high grade results from our surface channel and underground sampling activities ahead of the drilling programme at Rodruin.” said Mark Campbell, President and CEO. “The channel samples were good overall, but of particular interest are the samples from the Spiral Pit. Even though samples could only be collected to a depth of 12-15 metres, as the working had collapsed and was filled with debris below this, we believe that the ancient working and the high grade mineralisation could potentially go much deeper, as at Aladdin’s Slot, which is open to 40m below ground level. The results of the underground sampling indicate the Au-Zn mineralisation occurs and continues at depth, not only at the surface, and we believe that the mineralisation at the Spiral Pit area is very similar to that seen at Aladdin’s Hill. Broadly the lithological sequence is at Rodruin is similar to Hamama, and the Au-Zn mineralisation occurring within the gossanous carbonates at Rodruin is very similar to that at Hamama. There is also a second distinctive, structurally controlled style of mineralisation at Rodruin, which is not present at Hamama. There are broad similarities between Rodruin and Hamama, and we believe that the carbonatehosted Au-Zn mineralisation at both areas are related, but there are also significant differences between Rodruin and Hamama. We do not see any development of the high grade structurally controlled mineralisation that we have identified at Rodruin in the Hamama area, and we are very excited about the potential at Rodruin, and the start of the drilling later this month. These results and the upcoming drilling, along with EMRA’s acceptance of our study and the granting of our extension, I believe offers our shareholders some exciting times ahead”.
The Rodruin prospect was discovered in December 2017 by Aton geologists (see news release dated December 14, 2017), and is located approximately 18km east of the Company’s Hamama West mineral deposit (see Figure 1). The Rodruin prospect is located in an area consisting of 2 approximately E-W trending parallel mountain ridges, with field mapping and sampling indicating the presence of extensive gold mineralisation over an area of at least 700m x 400m at surface (see Figure 2), associated with ancient workings. Abundant visible gold has been and continues to be identified in hand specimens from surface outcrops, and ancient dumps and underground workings, with individual selective grab samples assaying up to 321g/t Au. The main series of extensive ancient underground workings in the Aladdin’s Hill area (see Figure 2) has also been sampled to a depth of approximately 40m below ground level, indicating continuation of the surface mineralisation at depth (see news releases dated February 6, 2018, March 5, 2018 and April 16, 2018).
Figure 1: Abu Marawat regional geology, showing the location of the Rodruin prospect
The construction of drill access roads and pads in the Aladdin’s Hill and Central Valley areas (see Figure 2) has now largely been completed, ahead of the upcoming reverse circulation percussion (“RC”) drill programme. Additional drill access roads are currently being pushed eastwards along the South Ridge to access other mineralised zones, including the Spiral Pit area. Capital Drilling’s track-mounted Gemrok MP-1000 multi-purpose rig, which is capable of both RC and diamond drilling, has arrived onsite (see news release dated July 31, 2018), and Aton now anticipates drilling will begin in the second half of August, pending the delayed arrival of drill rods, currently being sea freighted from the supplier in Europe. The first phase of drilling is planned to consist of approximately 4,000 metres of RC drilling, and will primarily test the main zone of ancient workings and mapped mineralisation in the Aladdin’s Hill area, and is expected to take about 6 weeks to complete.
Figure 2: Location of the Aladdin’s Hill area and the Spiral Pit at Rodruin, with gold assay results from surface sampling
Channel sampling at Aladdin’s Hill
During the ongoing drill access road construction a surface channel sampling programme to test potential mineralisation exposed in the road cuttings was commenced. To date 14 channel profiles have been sampled (ROC-002 to ROC-015). Assay results for the first 7 profiles ROC-002 to ROC-008 (see Figure 3) in the Aladdin’s Hill area have been received, which show the presence of Au-Zn mineralisation in all profiles, and are reported herein.
After the faces of the road cuttings and drill pads had been exposed and cleaned up by the excavator, they were prepared for channel sampling. The cleaned faces were sampled along mechanically saw-cut channels, and were sampled at nominal 2m intervals, but with individual sample lengths varying from less than 1m to greater than 3m, as appropriate. A single continuous sample channel was cut along each profile using a large, generator powered angle grinder (see Figure 4). The sample channel was initially marked up with paint, with the start and end points of individual samples marked on the exposed cutting. An aluminium tag was also hammered into the sample profile to mark the sample positions. The channels were created by cutting 2 parallel cuts, approximately 75mm apart with the angle grinder (see Figure 4). The channel was subsequently sampled using a hammer and chisel with the sampled material excavated from between the 2 cuts. A few of the channel profiles were manually sampled using hammer and chisel only, where practical, without the use of the angle grinder. Samples were bagged up in cloth bags, and prepared onsite as per standard drilling samples.
Figure 3: Schematic geological plan of the Aladdin’s Hill area, showing the location of drill access roads, drill pads and channel sample profiles ROC-002 to ROC-008
Figure 4: Channel sampling altered and well mineralised slates in the ROC-005 profile at Aladdin’s Hill
A total of 84 channel samples were collected from 7 profiles at Aladdin’s Hill, as well as 15 QAQC samples (7 duplicate samples, 2 standard or CRM samples, and 6 blank or flushing samples). A total length of 188.5m was sampled in the 7 profiles, ROC-002 to ROC-008. All samples were crushed to -4mm at the Company’s onsite sample preparation facility at Hamama, with c. 500g splits shipped to ALS Minerals at Rosia Montana, Romania for analysis. Samples were analysed for gold by fire assay using analytical code Au AA23; and silver, copper, lead and zinc with an aqua regia digest followed by an atomic absorption spectroscopy finish (analytical code AA45). High grade gold samples (>10 g/t Au) were re-analysed using analytical code Au-AA25; and high grade Ag and base metal samples (Ag >100 g/t, and Cu, Pb, and Zn >10,000ppm or >1%) were routinely re-analysed using the ore grade technique AA46.
Mineralised intervals from the 7 sampled channel profiles, at a cut-off grade of 0.5 g/t Au, are summarised below in Table 1. Of the 188.5m sampled, 170m was mineralised above the cutoff grade.
Aton considers the results of the initial phase of channel sampling to be very encouraging with significant Au(-Zn) mineralisation encountered in all the sampled profiles over a significant areal extent at Aladdin’s Hill, in a variety of rock types. It is noted that none of the profiles sampled were in the immediate area of the main ancient underground workings, but were peripheral to this zone (see Figure 3).
The most significant intersection from this phase of sampling, 25.5m @ 4.74 g/t Au (and 0.64% Zn), was returned from profile ROC-004 in gossanous carbonates (see Figure 5), with minor associated ancient underground workings. Further intersections in profiles ROC-002, ROC-003 (see Figure 5), ROC-006 and ROC-008 were also associated with gossanous carbonate rock types. It is noted that carbonate rock types were gossanous and mineralised everywhere they have been excavated during road and pad construction around Aladdin’s Hill to date, although this was not necessarily obvious from their weathered surfaces in exposure.
Figure 5: The Aladdin’s Hill area at Rodruin, viewed from the southeast, showing drill access roads and pads, and the locations of channel sample profiles ROC-002 to ROC-005. (Note that the dark brown material in several of the profiles, including ROC-004, is due to the presence of mineralised and gossanous carbonates)
A significant intersection of 28.0m @ 1.83 g/t Au (and 0.26% Zn) was returned from profile ROC-005 in altered and mineralised slates and metasediments (see Figure 5), with no carbonate rocks or obvious structurally controlled mineralisation present. Gold mineralisation associated with altered slates and metasediments was also identified in profiles ROC-003 and ROC-007.
The results of this initial phase of channel sampling at Aladdin’s Hill are considered to be significant by Aton, as they indicate the presence of Au(-Zn) mineralisation in different rock types, and away from the main workings which were the focus of ancient mining. These results appear to back up Aton’s current interpretation of the mineralisation at the Aladdin’s Hill area at Rodruin as consisting of a core of potentially very high grade shear, fracture or bedding controlled zones of silicification and phyllic alteration, flooded with Au mineralisation and occasional auriferous quartz veins, hosted by phyllic altered slates and siliciclastic metasediments. A separate phase of earlier Au-Zn mineralisation also occurs within and is associated with carbonate rocks, which is broadly similar to that seen at Hamama.
Underground sampling at the Spiral Pit
The deep Spiral Pit working is located near the crest of the South Ridge, approximately 360m southeast of the main mine workings at Aladdin’s Hill (see Figure 2). The Spiral Pit is a large and ancient underground working that exploited anastomosing and structurally controlled mineralisation dipping at approximately 60° to the north, and continues to a depth of approximately 15m below ground level before becoming collapsed and choked up with rubble. It is believed that the working is likely to continue to a potentially substantially greater depth. It is a complex working with numerous smaller anastomosing slots and tunnels coming off the main opening at different orientations, from which high grade structures are interpreted to have been exploited by the ancient miners. In this regard the Spiral Pit bears strong similarities to the c. 40m Aladdin’s Slot working previously sampled underground in the Aladdin’s Hill area (see news release dated April 16, 2018).
3 grab samples were taken from the Spiral Pit during the first phase of sampling completed at Rodruin in December 2017 (see news release, dated February 6, 2018), which yielded results including assays of 20.6 g/t and 12.6 g/t Au, and 37.9% Zn. Mineralisation at the Spiral Pit is associated with various dark blackishbrown, red and yellowish hemimorphite-rich (ie. zinc-rich) gossans associated with zones of shearing and structurally emplaced quartz veins, predominantly occurring in altered slates, close to the contact with the main carbonate unit on the South Ridge at Rodruin. The geological setting is similar to that at the Aladdin’s Hill area.
A further 6 individual channel samples were taken underground from the Spiral Pit during July 2018, at various elevations, over lengths varying from between 1.0m and 2.25m, as well as one duplicate QAQC sample. Results of all samples from the Spiral Pit are included in Appendix A, with the recent samples returning gold assay values including 35.3 g/t, 14.85 g/t and 14.4 g/t (duplicate 14.65 g/t) Au, and 20.7% Zn. Sampling was undertaken at the Spiral Pit over a vertical elevation range estimated as about 12-15m, although the ancient workings clearly continued below the level where they became choked with rubble. The results of the sampling indicates mineralisation occurs and continues at depth, and does not occur merely at surface.
The 9 samples from the Spiral Pit returned mean average grades of 12.44 g/t Au, 24.0 g/t Ag, 0.60% Cu and 7.99% Zn. The Spiral Pit area has potential for the development of high grade structurally controlled Au(-Ag-Cu-Zn) mineralisation similar to that in the main workings at the Aladdin’s Hill area, within a background envelope of lower grade mineralisation. Access roads are currently being pushed along the South Ridge with a view to accessing and drill testing the Spiral Pit area.
About Aton Resources Inc.
Aton Resources Inc. (AAN: TSX-V) is focused on its 100% owned Abu Marawat Concession (“Abu Marawat”), located in Egypt’s Arabian-Nubian Shield, approximately 200km north of Centamin’s Sukari gold mine. Aton has identified a 40km long gold mineralised trend at Abu Marawat, anchored by the Hamama deposit in the west and the Abu Marawat deposit in the east, containing numerous gold exploration targets, including three historic British mines. Aton has identified several distinct geological trends within Abu Marawat, which display potential for the development of RIRG and orogenic gold mineralisation, VMS precious and base metal mineralisation, and epithermal-IOCG precious and base metal mineralisation. Abu Marawat is over 738km2 in size and is located in an area of excellent infrastructure; a four-lane highway, a 220kV power line, and a water pipeline are in close proximity.
The technical information contained in this News Release was prepared by Javier Orduña BSc (hons), MSc, MCSM, DIC, MAIG, SEG(M), FGS, Exploration Manager of Aton Resources Inc. Mr. Orduña is a qualified person (QP) under National Instrument 43-101 Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects.
For further information regarding Aton Resources Inc., please visit us at www.atonresources.com or contact:
President and Chief Executive Officer
Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
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