Diamond drill core from Impact Minerals' Clermont exploration site. Copper sulphides (chalcopyrite) is yellow coloured at base of core; brown to honey coloured zinc sulphide (sphalerite) in the centre; and colloform to crustiform quartz-chalcedony in upper right.
Diamond drill core from Impact Minerals' Clermont exploration site. Copper sulphides (chalcopyrite) is yellow coloured at base of core; brown to honey coloured zinc sulphide (sphalerite) in the centre; and colloform to crustiform quartz-chalcedony in upper right. Contributed

'World class' gold deposits discovered in Bowen Basin

BILLIONS of dollars worth of gold could be hidden beneath the earth's surface near Clermont.

After ramping up exploration at their project site south of the Bowen Basin mining town in mid-2018, Perth based company Impact Minerals has had a major breakthrough.

The first diamond drill hole carried out at the site recently has revealed a 2km long target zone for high grade shoots of epithermal gold-silver-base metal mineralisation, host to world class gold deposits.

Impact managing director Dr Mike Jones said the deposits were similar to those seen at the famous Pajingo mine near Charters Towers, which has produced more than five million ounces of gold in its lifetime.

Dr Jones said as a result of the diamond drill, which intercepted 10.9 grams per tonne of gold, 146 g/t of silver, 8.3 per cent zinc and 5.1 per cent lead, work would ramp up at the exploration site this year.

"We have actually had the Clermont project for quite a long time and have worked on it on and off for a number of years. Following a review at the middle of last year we decided the project still had merit and we should drill some of the targets that we had," Dr Jones said.

"Ten grams of gold (per tonne of rock) is a very good result, it occurs in a thicker intercept about two and a half metres thick, but importantly it has high grades of silver and also zinc and lead associated with it. Combined it's a very healthy intercept and certainly one of the highest grades of gold we have in that area."

Dr Jones said Impact had also carried out analysis for trace metals, or pathfinder metals, in a bid to determine the size and scale of the system - which led to a further breakthrough.

"It is clear from all of these pathfinder metals that we have a very large system that extends over at least 4km and probably up to 10km although those areas haven't been drilled yet," he said.

"It has confirmed that underlying all of this is a very healthy system, but the majority of the drill holes so far have only produced narrow intercepts of modest gold.

"Suddenly to get this much higher gold and good zinc, lead and copper has been a really good breakthrough."



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