Merlin Ni-Cu Project
The Merlin Project is located 100km east of Derby in the Kimberley Region of Western Australia and covers an area of 28km2. Since grant the licence has been systematically explored for nickel-copper (Ni-Cu) mineralisation. In 2015 Buxton discovered significant Ni-Cu sulphide mineralisation at Merlin, marking a turning point for the prospectivity of the Palaeoproterozoic Ruins Dolerite unit in the King Leopold Orogen, West Kimberley (https://www.asx.com.au/asxpdf/20151126/pdf/4339ms50q48sf1.pdf).
During the most recent 2018 field season, multiple intersections of primary orthomagmatic Ni-Cu sulphide were drilled. The highlight was drill hole DMDD0015 into conductor J which assayed an impressive 40m at 1%Nieq, including an interval of 6m at 3.01%Ni (https://www.asx.com.au/asxpdf/20190311/pdf/443cgxx1272t39.pdf). Another highlight was drill hole DMDD0018 into conductor H which assayed at 6m at 2.02%Ni.
Untested 2018 downhole EM plates remain, including within the Conductor C interpreted hinge zone, proximal to gravity high feature. Numerous large conductors related to Ni-Cu mineralisation remain open along strike and at depth. Merlin is a very high metal tenor system (average 8% Ni tenor) with individual assays up to 8.14% Nickel, 5.26% Copper and 0.69% Cobalt indicating the presence of an extensive high-grade orthomagmatic Ni-Cu system.
Buxton Resources Limited (ASX:BUX; Buxton) has entered into binding agreements with Independence Group NL (ASX:IGO) to dramatically advance and accelerate the exploration of the Merlin/Double Magic prospect and the greater West Kimberley tenement position. IGO has subscribed to 15% of Buxton’s capital structure via the placement of 20,408,315 ordinary shares at 20 cents per share representing a 35.2% premium to the 20-day VWAP. This raised approximately $4M for Buxton. Proceeds will be used to fund the next round of exploration at the Merlin prospect and other work. In addition, Buxton has granted IGO a 24-month option, whereby IGO can earn in and ultimately achieve a 70% JV interest in the Double Magic/Merlin prospect by spending AUD $8,000,000 (exclusive of GST) over a four (4) year period. Buxton will then be free carried to completion of Feasibility. Buxton will continue to manage the Merlin prospect exploration whilst IGO will undertake management of the West Kimberley regional exploration. (https://www.asx.com.au/asxpdf/20181129/pdf/440rr5j544vq9z.pdf)
A significant exploration program at Merlin this field season is being finalised through the Buxton IGO technical committee to test several hypotheses, including depth extensions to the intrusive complex and possible structurally hosted zones of mineralisation. At minimum the field season will comprise deep penetrating SQUID MLTEM planned for Q2 2019 and a deep drilling and DHTEM program planned for Q3 2019.