South Abitibi is an early-stage, exploration project with multi-commodity potential surrounded by world-class gold, silver (cobalt), nickel, copper, zinc mining districts.
Location and Access
Located in the Cobalt-Temagami Region of Ontario, the South Abitibi Project covers approximately 16,485 hectares (“ha”) and is located 15 kilometres southwest of Cobalt, Ontario. South Abitibi sits within a metal-endowed segment of the Abitibi Greenstone Belt with the world-class districts of Sudbury (Ni-Cu-PGEs) to the southwest, Cobalt (Co-Ag) to the northeast and Kirkland Lake (Au) to the north. The property has excellent infrastructure with roads, rail, power and gas pipelines crossing the property.
The property is underlain by Proterozoic-age sedimentary rocks, Nipissing diabase and inliers of Archean-age greenstone. Much of the area has seen little exploration work due to an exploration moratorium that extended from 1970 to 2000. Gold occurrences have recently been identified in the South Abitibi property through surface sampling and preliminary drilling conducted by NewOrigin Gold. Gold potential is highlighted by research indicating a covered and essentially unexplored Abitibi Greenstone Belt volcanic arc and regional tectonic break extends across the property.
NewOrigin’s exploration to date at South Abitibi includes airborne magnetic and electromagnetic surveying, prospecting, geological mapping, induced polarization geophysics and diamond drilling conducted between 2015 and 2018. The majority of exploration work to date has been focused on evaluating gold mineralization north of the 1.7 km Ni-Cu trend. In 2018, NewOrigin completed 2 drill holes at the western end of the Ni-Cu trend and intersected up to 0.21% Ni across 1 metre and 0.39% Ni across 0.2 metres. The trend remains open to the west. The gold occurrences remain a key focus and warrant further work. However, rising global demand for “Critical Minerals” has prompted re-evaluation of the extensive Ni-Cu and cobalt potential of the South Abitibi Project.
In the fall of 2022, a total of nine rock samples were collected within a small area at the center of the property which hosts historic occurrences of nickel (“Ni”) and copper (“Cu”). Ni-Cu occurrences can historically be traced along a 1.7 km east-west trend with the most recent samples taken from an area at the eastern portion of the trend and returned assays up to 1.0% Ni and 0.5% Cu. Sample values for base metal sulphides were returned as follows:
The sample area hosts a Ni-Cu sulphide zone up to 7 metres thick and appears to be located at the contact between steeply-dipping ultramafic and mafic volcanic rocks to the north and felsic volcanic/cherty sedimentary rock to the south. The zone is characterized by disseminated to massive and semi-massive sulphides dominated by pyrite, pyrrhotite, chalcopyrite and pentlandite.
The western portion of the Ni-Cu trend is associated with massive and semi-massive sulphide nearby mafic intrusive rocks similar to those at the Kanichee Cu-Ni mine 10 kilometres southwest of South Abitibi. In addition, a 1.5 kilometre long series of airborne electromagnetic anomalies was detected by a “VTEM” survey flown by NewOrigin in 2015. The VTEM target anomalies are located in a north-south trend 1 kilometre southeast of the sampled area within mafic volcanic rocks. This 1.5 kilometre long trend is not exposed at surface and has never been drill tested
Historic exploration of the Ni-Cu trend was conducted primarily by Rib Lake Copper Mines (1952), Coniagas Mines Ltd (1956), Nickel Rim Mines Ltd (1963, 1964, 1965, 1971 and 1972). These companies completed approximately 40 drill holes and identified a trend of prospective sulphide occurrences over a 1.7 km strike length. Drilling returned values of up to 0.6% Ni and 0.2% Cu across 7.04 metres. Importantly, this area was placed under an exploration moratorium from 1972 to 1996 (24 years) during which time no mineral exploration could be conducted. Following the moratorium, 4 drill holes were completed in the area by Raven Resources in 1999 and 2 holes by Temex in 2011. Raven Resources hole WL-4-99 returned 0.5% Ni and 0.3% Cu across 5.5 metres. Much of the earlier work was conducted without the assistance of modern geophysical targeting and data analytics methods and all occurrences identified to date remain open along strike and at depth.
Historic Cu-Ni sulphide occurrences known through previous drilling extend under cover. New AEM anomalies have been delineated by NewOrigin Gold which are targeted for drilling. Co-Ag occurrences discovered over 70 years ago have not been followed up.