14 November 2017
EXCELLENT RESULTS FROM SALINBAS PROJECT: ARDALA AREA
Ariana Resources plc ("Ariana" or "the Company"), the exploration and development company operating in Turkey, is pleased to announce the completion of recent exploration across the Hot Gold Corridor and within its wholly-owned 1Moz Salinbas Gold Project ("Salinbas" or "the Project").
· Significantly anomalous zone 1.4 km long and 0.2 km wide of gold, silver, copper, lead and zinc geochemistry identified at Ardala North.
· Potential for sizable multi-element mineral systems to occur in the vicinity of the Ardala Porphyry, in particular along certain geological horizons.
· The scale and complexity of the mineral system identified strongly indicates the potential to host multi-million ounce gold deposits and significant base-metal systems:
o Exceptional rock-chip assay results include 11.20 g/t Au + 131 g/t Ag + 3.26% Cu + 0.24% Pb; 4.21 g/t Au + 815 g/t Ag + 3.80% Cu + 10.26% Pb and 4.35 g/t Au + 64 g/t Ag + 1.15% Cu + 0.25% Pb.
o Previous drilling of the Ardala Porphyry demonstrated significant enrichment in gold and base-metals, highlighted by an intercept from surface of 135m @ 2.28g/t Au + 0.29% Cu + 113g/t Mo.
o Old workings mapped and sampled near the Ardala Porphyry returned several encouraging results, including significant gold, silver, copper, lead and zinc.
o Mapping coupled with previous drilling at Ardala South confirms the extents of a rhenium and molybdenum (plus minor copper) enriched porphyry located south of the Ardala Porphyry.
Dr. Kerim Sener, Managing Director, commented:
"The exploration team are very excited by these results and are continuing to appraise large amounts of incoming data from site, which will lead towards a further important announcement concerning the Salinbas area. Based on our improved understanding, the Ardala multiphase porphyry system is clearly the locus of various styles of mineralisation throughout the northern part of the Hot Gold Corridor. This is demonstrated in particular by the Salinbas gold-silver deposit, which indicates that the range of mineralisation propagating from the Ardala Porphyry source exceeded 1.5 km. This suggests that several other geologically favourable sites in the periphery of the porphyry must be considered highly prospective targets.
This scale and complexity of the mineral system, comprising a large nested porphyry complex significantly enriched in gold, silver, copper and molybdenum, with the associated gold-silver deposit at Salinbas, underscores our view that this region has the potential to host multi-million ounce gold deposits and significant base-metal systems."
This announcement contains inside information for the purposes of Article 7 of EU Regulation 596/2014.
In June 2017, the Ariana exploration team commenced a comprehensive exploration programme to better understand the prospectivity of the Hot Gold Corridor and the Company's Salinbas Project, in order to define new high priority targets. Since this time, an area of approximately 170 km2 has been sampled and mapped, including the collection of 5,234 surface geochemical samples. Mapping of over 2,000 geological outcrops and the acquisition of 600 structural measurements has advanced the geological understanding of the area and aided in the definition of new targets. Evaluation of new and historic data identified over twenty significantly anomalous targets including an area immediately to the north of the Ardala Porphyry, referred to as Ardala North.
In addition to the mapping and sampling programme, it was important to establish an improved understanding of the relationships between the Ardala Porphyry and surrounding styles of mineralisation such as Salinbas. The relationship of such mineralisation with the geometry of various geological features was also investigated (Figure 1 & 2). The new 1:2,000 scale geological mapping has identified several important features within the local geology, which will assist with future targeting and exploration drilling both at Ardala and at Salinbas. In particular, a circular intrusive feature, that appears to enclose the Ardala Porphyry and related prospects, is considered to be a potential regional control on the mineralisation (Figure 1).
Figure 1: Simplified interpretive geological map of the Ardala Porphyry and surrounding area, identifying Ardala Main as the core of a nested multiphase intrusive complex, part of which is significantly enriched in gold, copper and molybdenum. A circular 'ring' feature comprising intrusive rocks of broadly the same age as Ardala Main, encircle all of the prospects and deposits defined at the northern end of the Hot Gold Corridor. At least two geological horizons are identified, which host additional potential for gold and base-metal mineralisation.
Figure 2: Simplified geological cross-section through the Salinbas and Ardala areas, showing the key features influencing the distribution of mineralisation in the vicinity. The Ardala North style mineralisation (shown in red) is seen to extend along a lower stratigraphic contact to the Salinbas style mineralisation. Other stockwork and replacement type mineralisation occurs in the vicinity of the Ardala Porphyry and extends in to the limestone units (shown in blue).
Soil samples analysed by portable X-ray fluorescence ("pXRF") identified a target at Ardala North, with highly elevated Ag, As, Cu, Pb, S and Zn. Follow-up 50 m x 50 m spaced infill pXRF soil sampling was initiated in September 2017. A total of 607 infill samples were collected over a 1.5 x 0.5 km area. Fifty rock chip samples were also collected for assay and obtained primarily from various limestone-porphyry contact zones, limestone breccia exposures, mineralised fractures/veins and from over twenty previously unmapped historic workings, where accessible.
Anomalous geochemical results over an area 1.4km long and 0.2km wide highlighted at least one Au, Ag, Cu, Pb and Zn mineralised zone, which defines the primary Ardala Porphyry host-rock contact boundary region (Figure 3 & 4). Proximal to the contact zone, where the porphyry makes contact with the limestone host-rocks, the limestone is highly brecciated and variably mineralised. At the contact itself, the porphyry is bleached, textureless and locally enriched with malachite, chalcocite and other intensely sulphidic zones. Distal to the contact, the limestone becomes less brecciated, locally crystallised and occasionally veined with malachite and azurite. Rock-chip assay samples from the various contact zones returned significant multi-element results, with high-grade gold, including:
Limestone-porphyry contact: 11.20 g/t Au + 131 g/t Ag + 3.26% Cu + 0.24% Pb
Limestone breccia with intense iron-oxides: 4.21 g/t Au + 815 g/t Ag + 3.80% Cu + 10.26% Pb
Intensely manganese-rich limestone breccia: 4.35 g/t Au + 64 g/t Ag + 1.15% Cu + 0.25% Pb
Figure 3: Summary geological map of the Ardala area superimposed on satellite imagery, showing the location of key geological features, in addition to rock-chip samples and drilling data referred to here.
Some holes drilled in 1993 in to the Ardala Porphyry (Ardala Main) highlight the importance of the intrusion in the development of mineralisation at its periphery (GMS prefixed holes). The following intercepts provide some understanding of the fertility of this intrusion at Ardala Main (at a 0.2 Au g/t cut-off):
GMS24: 355 m @ 0.57 g/t Au + 0.31% Cu + 150 g/t Mo (no analysis for Ag)
GMS26: 135 m @ 2.28 g/t Au + 0.29% Cu + 113 g/t Mo (no analysis for Ag)
Other historical drilling undertaken on the northern flank of Ardala Main in 1993 (GMS prefixed holes) and 2005 (DURU prefixed holes), in part tested the southern extensions of the zones of mineralisation identified at Ardala North and include (variable cut-offs depending on lead element):
DURU002: 7.8 m @ 1.77 g/t Au + 54 g/t Ag + 0.85% Zn
GMS21: 10 m @ 0.75 g/t Au + 0.30% Cu + 0.37% Pb + 4.55% Zn (no analysis for Ag)
GMS28: 165.7 m @ 0.28 g/t Au + 0.19% Cu + 98 g/t Mo (no analysis for Ag)
However, the majority of these holes were designed primarily to test the porphyry, rather than the mineralised contact between the porphyry and the adjacent limestone units. These drill holes did not specifically test zones which correlate with high-grade gold, silver and base-metal rock-chip samples discussed above or areas containing extensive historic workings. Rock-chip samples obtained from old slag heaps and entrances of historic workings, where accessible, also returned with significant results, such as:
Adit entrance: 1.28 g/t Au + 19 g/t Ag + 3.33% Cu + 12.85% Zn
Historic slag heap: 0.68 g/t Au + 108 g/t Ag + 1.25% Cu + 132 g/t Mo + 2.45% Pb + 4.76% Zn
Float sample in old working: 0.80 g/t Au + 33.6 g/t Ag + 1.19% Cu
Only half of the known workings have been adequately sampled to date due to problems with accessibility. The majority of workings are concentrated in areas where the black brecciated limestone zones occur, which are typically proximal to the limestone-porphyry contact (Figure 3). These areas of brecciation and mineralisation define the Ardala North target and will be investigated further. It is notable that the samples obtained from the old workings typically contain lower gold grades than those obtained from mineralised outcrops in the vicinity, suggesting that the old workings were either focused on dominantly base-metal rich horizons or that higher-grade gold ore was preferentially extracted.
Figure 4: pXRF copper geochemistry map of the Ardala area, showing the concentration of copper and associated base metals (e.g. lead and zinc) at the Ardala North target. Note that the Salinbas orebody is clearly not associated with the copper enrichment in proximity to the Ardala Main porphyry. The Re-Mo porphyry to the south is also not particularly enriched in copper.
On the southern periphery of Ardala Main, approximately 700m south of the Ardala North target, a separate intrusive suite containing a rhenium-molybdenum enriched porphyry has been defined (Figure 5). In 2010, six holes tested part of the target, of which two holes reported unusual rhenium values, with best intercepts including (at a 0.5 g/t Re cut-off):
ARD007: 6m @ 1.99 g/t Re + 422 g/t Mo + 0.19% Cu
ARD007: 10m @ 0.72 g/t Re + 310 g/t Mo + 0.34% Cu
ARD003: 2m @ 1.22 g/t Re + 171 g/t Mo + 0.19% Cu
The Ardala South zone remains significantly underexplored, with one clear target having not yet been drilled to the south and east. This area will become subject to further exploration programmes in the future.
Figure 5: Total Magnetic Intensity (TMI) map of the Ardala area. The Ardala North target is located entirely within a low magnetic zone, which appears to wrap around the porphyry at Ardala Main. This suggests that the mineralisation is located proximal to the contact zone of Ardala Main, though is cut off by the Re-Mo porphyry (which shows a choppy magnetic signature) to the south. This indicates that the Re-Mo porphyry likely represents a later phase of intrusion and associated mineralisation. The high concentration of Mo in parts of the Salinbas orebody may need to be understood in this context.
Ariana Resources plc
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7407 3616
Michael de Villiers, Chairman
Kerim Sener, Managing Director
Beaumont Cornish Limited
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7628 3396
Roland Cornish / Felicity Geidt
Beaufort Securities Limited
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7382 8300
Panmure Gordon (UK) Limited
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7886 2500
Adam James / Tom Salvesen
Dr Kerim Sener, BSc (Hons), MSc, PhD, is the Managing Director of Ariana Resources plc. A graduate of the University of Southampton in Geology, he also holds a Master's degree from the Royal School of Mines (Imperial College, London) in Mineral Exploration and a doctorate from the University of Western Australia. He is a Fellow of The Geological Society of London and has worked in geological research and mineral consultancy in Africa, Australia and Europe. He has read and approved the technical disclosure in this regulatory announcement.
About Ariana Resources
Ariana is an exploration and development company focused on epithermal gold-silver and porphyry copper-gold deposits in Turkey. The Company is developing a portfolio of prospective licences originally selected on the basis of its in-house geological and remote-sensing database.
The Company's flagship assets are its Kiziltepe and Tavsan gold projects which form the Red Rabbit Gold Project. Both contain a series of prospects, within two prolific mineralised districts in the Western Anatolian Volcanic and Extensional (WAVE) Province in western Turkey. This Province hosts the largest operating gold mines in Turkey and remains highly prospective for new porphyry and epithermal deposits. These core projects, which are separated by a distance of 75km, form part of a 50:50 Joint Venture with Proccea Construction Co. The Kiziltepe Sector of the Red Rabbit Project is fully-permitted and is currently in production. The total resource inventory at the Red Rabbit Project and wider project area stands at c. 605,000 ounces of gold equivalent. At Kiziltepe a Net Smelter Return ("NSR") royalty of up to 2.5% on production is payable to Franco-Nevada Corporation. At Tavsan an NSR royalty of up to 2% on future production is payable to Sandstorm Gold.
In north-eastern Turkey, Ariana owns 100% of the Salinbas Gold Project, comprising the Salinbas gold-silver deposit and the Ardala copper-gold-molybdenum porphyry among other prospects. The total resource inventory of the Salinbas project area is c. 1 million ounces of gold equivalent. A NSR royalty of up to 2% on future production is payable to Eldorado Gold Corporation.
Beaufort Securities Limited and Panmure Gordon (UK) Limited are joint brokers to the Company and Beaumont Cornish Limited is the Company's Nominated Adviser.
For further information on Ariana you are invited to visit the Company's website at www.arianaresources.com.
Glossary of Technical Terms:
"Ag" the chemical symbol for silver;
"As" the chemical symbol for arsenic;
"Au" the chemical symbol for gold;
"azurite" a copper carbonate hydroxide mineral;
"chalcocite" a copper sulphide mineral;
"Cu" the chemical symbol for copper;
"g/t" grams per tonne;
"Pb" the chemical symbol for lead;
"pXRF" portable X-ray Fluorescence handheld device that uses X-rays to excite matter at the atomic level. A built in CPU and display on the back of the unit provide live geochemical results within seconds for elements ranging from magnesium through to the heaviest metals such as uranium. A three filter 50 second sample scan is typical. Taking multiple readings across a sample grid allows the user to very rapidly build up a geochemical map, outlining potential pathfinder elements associated with mineralisation, lithological boundaries and intensity or zoning of mineralised areas;
"malachite" a copper carbonate hydroxide mineral;
"Mo" the chemical symbol for molybdenum;
"Re" the chemical symbol for rhenium;
"S" the chemical symbol for sulphur;
"Zn" the chemical symbol for zinc.