Uranium news from Saskatchewan and elsewhere to May 1, 2015
by Greg Klein
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NexGen ends winter with outstanding step-outs, plans 2015 maiden resource
Following a season in which 44 of 46 holes at Rook 1’s Arrow zone found mineralization, the last one released by NexGen Energy TSXV:NXE showed the project’s highest total composite mineralization. That April 29 announcement followed an April 23 batch of results that included some of the zone’s strongest offscale radioactivity. Although lots of assays are still pending, drilling resumes in early June with five rigs expected to sink a total of 25,000 metres. The longer-term goal is a maiden resource by December.
Winter’s record-breaker was angled hole AR-15-45b, which drilled through A2 and A3, two of the zone’s three mineralized shears. It returned a composite 226 metres of mineralization distributed within a 468-metre section starting at 391 metres in downhole depth. Included was a composite 9.8 metres that went “offscale” between 10,000 and 54,000 counts per second.
The results come from a hand-held scintillometer that measures drill core radioactivity. Readings above 10,000 cps are considered offscale due to the limitations of earlier devices. These measurements don’t substitute for assays, which have yet to arrive.
Another radioactive announcement six days earlier heralded a substantial expansion to A2’s high-grade core, some of Arrow’s strongest off-scale measurements and semi-massive to massive pitchblende that would make a geologist’s mouth water. Currently marking Arrow’s southwestern border, hole AR-15-44b stepped out 76 metres southwest along strike from AR-14-30, which last October assayed 7.54% U3O8 over 63.5 metres.
AR-15-44b found a composite 190.7 metres within a 519-metre section, starting at 430.5 metres in depth. The results included an offscale composite of 40.45 metres.
Other highlights include:
- AR-15-43a, with 92 composite metres within a 501.5-metre section, starting at 346 metres
- AR-15-42a, with 68.9 composite metres within a 592.5-metre section starting at 142.5 metres
Arrow now covers 515 metres by 215 metres, with mineralization found vertically at depths between 100 metres and 920 metres. Still open in all directions and at depth, the zone boasts significant off-scale mineralization at both its southwestern and northeastern extents.
Beyond Arrow, NexGen’s winter season also resulted in Rook 1’s Bow discovery.
Athabasca Basin bought deals: Fission closes $20 million, Denison announces $15 million
April 29 proved a good day for uranium financings as the Basin’s two most prominent explorers announced substantial bought deals. Fission Uranium TSX:FCU completed a private placement of 13.34 million flow-through shares at $1.50 to bring in $20.01 million. Denison Mines TSX:DML announced an agreement to purchase 12 million flow-through shares at $1.25 for $15 million, an offer that’s expected to close around May 26.
Fission’s placement started at $15 million on April 1. Within hours the figure rose to $17.4 million. With the underwriters exercising their additional 15% option, the deal closed on $20.01 million. Earlier this month the company finished its winter program at Patterson Lake South, which strived to expand and upgrade the Triple R deposit and the R600W zone, as well as explore the PLS property farther afield.
Denison also wrapped up winter work earlier this month after sinking 61 holes totalling 30,400 metres on seven projects, most of them joint ventures. Summer plans call for about 34,000 metres on eight projects, focusing on the flagship Wheeler River project, which has a maiden resource for the Gryphon zone planned for December to complement the very high-grade Phoenix deposit three kilometres southeast. Denison holds 60% of the JV with Cameco Corp TSX:CCO (30%) and JCU (Canada) Exploration (10%).
Also announced April 29, Cameco’s Q1 results showed $566 million in revenue, a 35% increase over the same period last year. Gross profit reached $129 million, a 19% increase. But a net loss attributable to shareholders sunk to $9 million, or $0.02 per share diluted, 107% below Q1 2014 performance. The company attributed blame “primarily due to higher mark-to-market losses on foreign exchange derivatives.”
In a more modest financing the following day, Kivalliq Energy TSXV:KIV closed the final tranche of a private placement totalling nearly $2.8 million. UEX Corp TSX:UEX offered a $2.5-million placement on April 21.
Phase I drilling finds U3O8 at Lakeland Resources’ Star/Gibbon’s Creek project
Assays released May 1 show a promising start to Lakeland Resources’ (TSXV:LK) Star/Gibbon’s Creek project. As a result the company plans geophysics and drilling to complement last winter’s 14-hole, 2,550-metre program on the road-accessible property a few kilometres from the town of Stony Rapids, on the Basin’s north-central rim.
Among highlights from the project’s South trend was hole GC15-03, immediately below the sub-Athabasca unconformity, which showed:
- 333.8 ppm U3O8 over 1.1 metres, starting at 106.8 metres in downhole depth
- (including 0.13% over 0.23 metres)
True widths weren’t available.
The hole also revealed uranium enrichment, strong hydrothermal alteration and the pathfinder elements boron, cobalt and nickel between 106.8 and 133 metres in depth.
Additional anomalous uranium came from two holes north and south of GC15-03:
- 86.7 ppm over 1 metre, starting at 114.2 metres
- 123.3 ppm over 2.1 metres, starting at 103.4 metres
GC15-02, collared near an historic hole that assayed 0.18% over 0.13 metres, showed:
- 120.3 ppm over 1 metre, starting at 101 metres
At the South zone’s eastern end, GC15-10 returned “a strong illite clay alteration assemblage from the unconformity (80.9 metres) to 148 metres’ depth,” Lakeland stated. “This interval corresponds to a zone of strong ductile shearing and local brittle-ductile cataclastic brecciation.”
GC15-06 on the Centre zone tested an area with some of the Basin’s strongest land-based RadonEx measurements. “Highly anomalous geochemical pathfinders were noted throughout the hole, including a zone of uranium enrichment from approximately 41 metres to 109.5 metres in depth.”
The company now plans airborne electromagnetics on the project’s eastern margins, ground gravity at the South trend and additional RadonEx surveys. Further drilling around GC15-06 and the South trend will follow.
“Given the early stage of exploration at Gibbon’s Creek, results obtained from this first round of drilling are very encouraging,” said president Jonathan Armes. “The geochemical, clay and alteration results are suggestive of a nearby basement-hosted or unconformity-hosted uranium occurrence…. Lakeland will have multiple exploration programs ongoing in and around the Athabasca Basin this summer and fall, which should provide for an exciting year.”
With one of the Basin-region’s largest portfolios, Lakeland currently holds 32 properties totalling over 300,000 hectares. Among other drill-ready projects are Newnham Lake, east of Star/Gibbon’s, and Lazy Edward Bay on the Basin’s southern rim.
Last week the company appointed well-known geologist Jody Dahrouge to Lakeland’s board of directors. During his 25-year career he played a key role in Fission Energy’s acquisition of Waterbury Lake, Patterson Lake and Patterson Lake South. Waterbury Lake now hosts the J-zone discovery, while PLS holds the Triple R deposit.
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