AIM quoted mineral exploration company Sunrise Resources (LON:SRES) has been granted an exploration licence for the Cue Diamond Project in Western Australia. The exploration licence application covers an area of approximately 70 sq km and lies 70km to the north-west of the town of Cue in the Murchison Mineral Field in the Yilgarn Craton. Sunrise is now set to initiate Aboriginal heritage surveys and further drilling is being planned for the second quarter of the year, subject to the successful completion of the heritage surveys and drill rig availability. The objectives of the first drill programme will be to obtain samples from the known kimberlites, to evaluate their diamond content/characteristics, and to test kimberlite targets at Fennels Well and Soapy Well.
The Cue region was explored for diamonds by De Beers between 1994 and 2001 during which time it discovered a number of kimberlite dykes in two separate areas within Sunrise’s licence area. At the "Cue 1" locality a kimberlite dyke outcrops and is reported by De Beers to be 2-3 m wide. Several drill holes intersected the dyke and one vertical hole intersected kimberlite from surface to 60m depth. At Soapy Well, 7km to the west, at least three closely spaced kimberlite dykes, up to 3m wide, were encountered in two drill traverses spaced 400m apart. De Beers reported positive diamond sampling results from both localities.
In addition, soil sampling and ground geophysics identified multiple drill targets for kimberlite at Fennels Well, 2.5km along strike from the Cue No 1 kimberlite and in a separate area close to the Cue 1 kimberlite where a new area of kimberlite rock debris was found on surface. Also of interest within the licence area is a sulphide-bearing gabbro dyke that was intersected in several drill holes by De Beers prior to the discovery of the Cue 1 kimberlite. Although not of interest to De Beers for diamond exploration, this gabbro dyke is now targeted by Sunrise for platinum group metals and gold.
Patrick Cheetham, the executive chairman of Sunrise, said: “De Beers found diamondiferous kimberlites in two separate areas on the licence and considered that the area had excellent potential for further discoveries. A number of targets were defined by De Beers before their strategic decision to cease exploration in Australia and these need to be drill tested.”
Sunrise was formed to acquire the diamond exploration interests of Tertiary Minerals in 2005. Since then, the company has made a number of new kimberlite discoveries in Finland and expanded its portfolio of diamond exploration interests to include the Cue project. In 2009 the company made a strategic decision to diversify its project interests and has since acquired interests in the Long Lake Project as well as the Derryginagh Barite mine in south-west Ireland. In May 2010, it secured an option agreement for the Long Lake Gold-Nickel-Copper-PGM project 20km south-west of the City of Sudbury, Ontario, Canada. The Sunrise Resources share price rose by 18% to 4.2p during the morning.
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