Ilo Sur Copper Project
The western flanks of Sothern Peru’s Andes Mountains host more than 125 billion pounds of contained copper in published reserves and resources, all within 100 km of Latin’s concession areas.
Ilo Este is the more advanced of ten target areas generated in Latin’s 100,000 hectares of 100% owned concessions. Mapping, geochemistry and ground geophysics evidence Porphyry Copper-Gold-Molybdenum mineralisation associated with a Cretaceous age intrusive complex surrounded by Jurassic volcanics. The volcanics may also have the potential to host Skarn Replacement or IOCG style mineralisation proximal to the intrusives. A similar Porphyry deposit is located less than 90 km along strike to the NW at Tia Maria (640Mt@0.39% Cu, 0.19 g/t Au).
Latin’s Ilo Norte project (now under option to a Peruvian company and currently being drilled) is only 20 km to the NW and hosts Skarn Replacement and IOCG style mineralisation in a package of Jurassic Volcanics similar to those at Ilo Este.
Drill permitting has commenced for Ilo Este and is expected to be completed in April 2014. Latin’s team in Peru has an exemplary record in social responsibility, and their highly efficient permitting history promises a rapid pathway to trouble-free drill testing.
Additional targets within Latin’s 100,000 hectares of 100% owned concession areas also available.
Ilo Este - In the Heart of The Ilo Copper District
Latin Resources Limited (ASX:LRS) is seeking a Joint Venture partner to further explore its Ilo Este Copper Project, comprising 5,300 hectares of the Company’s more than 100,000 hectare, 100% owned concession holdings in the highly prospective coastal IOCG/Porphyry Copper belt of Southern Peru (Figure 1). Over 125 billion pounds of contained copper in published reserves and resources are found within 100 km of these concessions and are the source of around half of Peru’s copper production (the world’s third largest copper producing nation).
Latin has already been successful in identifying two previous targets within this part of the belt that have been partly drill tested to date: The Mariela Fe/Cu target currently being drilled under an agreement with major shareholder Junefield;
and Ilo Norte where drilling by Latin in 2011 and subsequent geochemistry and geophysics generated a significant IOCG target now being drilled under an agreement with a Peruvian Company.
Ongoing exploration at both Mariela and Ilo Norte has provided Latin’s geologists with invaluable knowledge of the mineralization processes that have occurred in the region, which has been applied to identify new exploratory targets. A thorough revision of the geological, geochemical, geophysical and spectral data available to the Company over its Ilo concessions during the last years, with the added perspective gained from work on the Mariela and Ilo Norte projects, has allowed the company to identify ten, highly prospective IOCG and Porphyry Copper target areas, of which Ilo Este is the most advanced.
Why target IOCG's....?
Several significant IOCG deposits occur along the lower western slopes of the Andes in Peru and Chile in similar geological terrain as that found in Latin’s Ilo concessions. Of the Chilean deposits, the Candelaria deposit (700Mt @ 0.95% Cu, 0.23 g/t Au), the nearby Punta de Cobre deposit (140Mt @ 3.0% Cu, 0.25g/t Au), the Manto Verde deposit (770Mt @ 0.54% Cu and 0.26 g/t Au), and the Mantos Blancos deposit (500Mt @ 1% Cu) are all fine examples. In Peru, the Mina Justa deposit (413Mt @ 0.79% Cu including 220Mt @ 8g/t Ag, 0.062g/t Au) is located some 400 km north of Latin’s concessions in the same metallogenic belt (Figure 3).
Copper grades in IOCG deposits tend to be higher than those found in porphyries, with the potential for significant quantities of ore averaging over 1% Cu compared with porphyries that tend to average closer to 0.5% Cu. The possibility of significant co-incident gold, silver and iron provides additional benefits to deposit’s economics.
In some IOCG deposits, the iron oxide concentration is high enough to make iron ore the principle production focus. The Marcona Mine (1.9 Bt @ 55.4% Fe) is the largest iron ore producer in Peru, and the nearby Pampa de Pongo Deposit (863 Mt @ 40.0% Fe) is currently undergoing feasibility studies. In Chile, the Dominga deposit (1Bt @ 26% Fe, 0.12% Cu, 0.02g/t Au) is close to production. Each of these deposits lies on the same coastal trend where Latin´s targets are located. Exploration by Junefield at Latin’s Mariela project has shown that iron mineralization processes are also extensive in Southern Peru, and enhance the prospectivity of the belt for iron ore. At Mariela drilling intercepted significant intervals with iron content greater than 30% Fe (e.g. Drill hole MA-02 with continuous Fe mineralization over 227m @ 37.2% Fe, press releases of 16/10/2012 and 13/01/2013).
Why target IOCG's....?
The Chilean and Peruvian Coastal Cordillera host all of the Andean type IOCG deposits (Figure 3). The discovery of the iron and copper mineralization at Ilo Norte and Mariela provides further evidence of the prospectivity of the Ilo belt
The Peruvian Coastal Cordillera is in the most part covered by sands and quaternary deposits (Figure 2), which limit the direct observation of any evidence of mineralization. IOCG deposits generally contain abundant iron oxides (usually magnetite and/or hematite) which are readily detectable by geophysical surveys.
Porphyry Copper Deposits are the world’s largest source of copper mined today and are generally the lowest unit cost mines due to their size and additional bi-product credits for Mo, Au, Ag and other metals. Peru and Chile together produce around one third of the world’s copper and the Western flanks of the Andes Mountains in Southern Peru are host to Peru’s largest and most prolific copper producers. Nearly 600,000 tonnes of copper is produced each year within 100 km of Latin’s concessions and is set to increase substantially in coming years with expansions and new mines coming on line. Latin’s concessions have good potential for Copper Porphyry deposits and such a discovery would be extremely valuable to the Company.
In recent years, the discovery of porphyry copper deposits near Inca de Oro (discovered in 2005 under 40m of alluvial cover) and development of Andacollo by Teck Resources Inc in Chile (Figure 2) has gone hand in hand with the recognition of porphyry copper style as well as IOCG alteration signatures throughout the Coastal Cordillera. These developments have thrown open the serious possibility that the latter is far more complex in terms of its metallogeny than hitherto appreciated and, furthermore, that scope for the discovery of many porphyry copper deposits exists in this belt. In Peru, the Tía Maria Cu/Au porphyry (640Mt @ 0.39% Cu, 0.19g/t Au) is located only 30 km along strike to the north west of Latin’s concessions which are extensively covered, (Figure 3), and relatively under explored in the past – a combination of circumstances that increases the probabilities of new discoveries.
Porphyry Copper deposits are the big Prize….
click image to enlarge
IOCG’s and Porphyry Copper deposits typically form within 'provinces' where several deposits of similar style, timing and similar genesis form within similar geologic settings. Porphyry Copper systems show a marked tendency to occur in linear belts, which range from a few tens to hundreds and even thousands of kilometers long (Figure 3). It is this more likely to find another porphyry deposit nearby an existing one. The Tia Maria Cu-Au Deposit, (640Mt @ 0.39% Cu, 0.19g/t Au), is located only 30 km WNW of Latin’s concessions (Figure 1), but has been known for many decades and its signature alteration outcrops. There is excellent scope for similar such deposits under covered terrain within Latin’s target areas.
At Ilo Este, past exploration by Rio Tinto in 2000 included 12 RC drill holes apparently of relatively shallow depth (<200 m) drilled only a portion of an area of strong Copper anomalism, and recent work by Latin geologists suggests that testing for Porphyry Copper mineralisation by these holes was at best partial. Rio Tinto abandoned the concessions some time later, but it is important to consider that the copper price in 2000 was less than US$1.00/lb, and that targets sought by Rio Tinto are so large, a number of excellent projects in Peru were similarly abandoned or sold on to other parties, e.g. Tia Maria (640Mt @ 0.39% Cu, 0.19g/t Au) was abandoned by Rio Tinto in the exploration phase, with the resource later realized by Southern Peru Copper Corporation who are currently permitting the project for mine construction.
Geophysics (Ground Magnetics) defines untested magnetic features consistent with a porphyry system
A ground magnetic geophysical survey has also been competed with 200 m to 100 m line spacing defining a magnetic anomaly associated with an intrusive Diorite with moderate to high contrast bi-polar features that warrant drill testing for Porphyry mineralisation (Figure 7).
Copper assay results from Soil and Rock-Chip samples are plotted for reference and highlight higher grades around the periphery of the intrusive body.
These anomalies have only been partially tested spatially by the Rio Tinto drilling in 2000. The Rio Tinto drill holes are plotted with an extrapolated trace to 250 m whereas these are estimated to be no more than 200 m deep.
3D inversion modeling of the ground magnetics also suggests that the Rio Tinto drilling at 250 m would have been insufficiently deep to properly test the modeled system (Figure 9).
Also of importance is that the intrusive body suggested by the magnetic high cut by section A-A’ is confirmed by field mapping in the western part of the anomaly, but the eastern half appears to be overlain by the Volcanic host rocks suggesting potential for blind mineralisation requiring drill testing