• Kerimsalinbas
  • Salinbas foundation rock
  • Drilling at Salinbas

Salinbas Project


The Salinbas Project represents a major opportunity for the future growth of Ariana. The project comprises three notable prospects: Salinbas, Ardala and Hizarliyayla. Notably the 1Moz in JORC Indicated and Inferred Salinbas Project is located within a multi-million ounce goldfield. The “Hot Gold Corridor” contains several significant gold-copper projects including the 4Moz Hot Maden project which lies 16km to the south of Salinbas.

Overview cont...

In 2013, Ariana announced a maiden JORC resource of 1.09 million oz gold equivalent (Inferred and Indicated) on the project (inclusive of the Ardala porphyry). In 2015, Ariana and Eldorado announced the completion of a scoping study for the Salinbas project providing a project NPV (8%) of US$108 million utilising a gold price of US$1,250 per ounce. The project was under Joint Venture with Eldorado Gold until late 2016. In December 2016 Ariana acquired 100% of the Salinbas Project for an NSR royalty of up to 2% of future production to Eldorado Gold. During the course of the JV Eldorado contributed US$8 million towards the exploration of the Joint Venture.


Artvin, NE Turkey

Stage of Development


Current resource

1.09 Moz Au *

* equivalent
Average Ag Grade

10.2 g/t

Average Au Grade

2.03 g/t

Total Metres Drilled

(Salinbas only)


The Salinbaş Project area currently consists of two main mineralised zones; the Ardala Porphyry and the Salinbaş Au-Ag deposit. The Ardala Copper-Gold-Molybdenum (Cu-Au-Mo) porphyry is the larger of the two zones, but Salinbaş contains the higher and more consistent grades. Salinbaş represents a high-grade replacement-type epithermal gold deposit. In outcrop, mineralisation is associated with a zone of brecciation within a structural corridor, which appears to trend toward the Ardala porphyry two kilometres away. The discovery was revealed in a series of trenches, and in two successive follow-up drilling programmes. Gold mineralisation at Salinbaş is typically represented as heavily oxidised and limonitised clay rich limestone breccias with minor silicification and localised copper and molybdenum enrichment.

The Artvin district is located in North Eastern Turkey and constitutes part of the Eastern Pontides province. The oldest rocks exposed in the area are Early Carboniferous granites that regionally intrude schists and gneisses. The metamorphic basement units are unconformably overlain by a volcano-sedimentary unit containing andesites with intercalations of limestone and marl lenses, bedded limestones; sandstone, marl and tuff–tuffite. These lithologies are covered by hornblende–andesites cut by a microdiorite intrusion and associated andesitic–dacitic porphyries.

Intrusions of the porphyries caused replacement fronts along re-crystallised limestone and porphyry contacts. This type of mineralisation is enriched in Mn, Zn, Cu, Au and Ba present in Fe- and Mn-oxides, pyrite, chalcopyrite, sphalerite and lesser bornite, sulphosalts and native gold. These replacement fronts are similar in nature to skarn mineralisation, but were developed at much lower temperatures than skarns.


Exploration in the Salinbaş district has progressed from reconnaissance rock-chip sampling to more systematic sampling, followed by detailed geophysical work, trenching, and later exploration diamond drilling. To date a series of diamond drilling programmes have been completed, providing sufficient data for the completion of a JORC resource estimate.

Click the years below to reveal timeline detail.

  • 2016

    Ariana acquires 100% of the Salinbas Project for an NSR royalty of up to 2% of future production to Eldorado Gold.
  • 2015

    Completion of scoping study, based on a 650,000 oz Au open-pittable resource, mining at a rate of 50,000 oz per annum over 10 years.
  • 2013

    4,000m diamond drilling program commenced on the Salinbaş Zone and its extension towards the Ardala porphyry.
  • 2011

    Follow-up drilling.
  • 2010

    A series of exploration trenches were excavated - discovery of the Salinbas Zone.
  • 2009

    A phased program of diamond drilling on the Ardala system.
  • 2008

    Ariana completes a JV agreement with European Goldfields (now Eldorado Gold). Systematic soil and rock-chip sampling programmes are completed across the region.
  • 2007

    The Ardala porphyry project was acquired by Ariana.
  • Early 1990s

    • Anglo-Tur completed a 13 hole diamond drilling programme.
    • Stream-sediment and rock-chip sampling.
    • Anglo-Tur Mining Company identified an extensive hydrothermal alteration zone using 1/50,000 Landsat imagery.