The Eagle’s Nest project is a development stage high grade Ni-Cu-PGE magmatic sulfide deposit located in the Archean McFaulds Lake greenstone belt in the Ring of Fire area of northwestern ON. The deposit hosts Proven and Probable reserves of 11.1Mt grading 1.68% Ni, 0.87% Cu, 0.89g/t Pt and 3.09g/t Pd, and an additional 9.0 Mt of Inferred resources grading 1.10% Ni, 1.14% Cu, 1.16g/t Pt and 3.49g/t Pd. The Blackbird chromite deposit lies 1km south of Eagle’s Nest and is hosted within the same ultramafic complex.
Eagle’s Nest consists of massive to net-textured to disseminated sulfides situated near the paleo base of a near vertically plunging ultramafic chonolith or feeder dyke which has been drilled to 1330m below surface and remains open at depth. The deposit is divided into an upper domain rich in massive sulfides lying within an interpreted paleo-topographic low, and a lower domain dominated by net-textured sulfides.
In 2020 Noront completed a metallurgical program demonstrating that ore from Eagle’s Nest can produce both a desirable bulk concentrate and high quality separate nickel and copper concentrates marketable to Canadian and International smelters or the battery metals space. This work will be incorporated into an update of the 2012 Feasibility Study. As part of the metallurgical program, two drill holes (NOT-20-001 and NOT-20-002) were drilled into the upper domain of the deposit to collect sample material for future variability testing. Assay results from these two holes are summarized in Table 1 and highlight the high-grade nature of the deposit which includes significant PGEs.
The location of these two holes relative to Eagle’s Nest is shown in Figure 1. Figure 2 displays a composite photo of the massive sulfide portion of NOT-20-001. Detailed photos of massive sulfide textures are displayed in figures 3-5. Figure 6 displays a composite of the net-textured mineralization in NOT-20-002 with details shown in figures 7-8.
Both holes are drilled south to north and intersect mineralized peridotite in a progression from disseminated to net-textured to massive sulfide towards the base of the intrusion along its northwestern contact. Sulfide mineralization is dominated by the assemblage pyrrhotite-pentlandite-chalcopyrite. Within massive sulfide pentlandite typically occurs as regularly distributed coarse grained ‘pentlandite eyes’, whereas chalcopyrite occurs as irregular segregations (figures 3-4). Net-textured and disseminated zones consist of fine-grained sulfides interstitial to medium grained meso-cumulate textured peridotite. Contacts with massive sulfide are typically quite sharp (figure 5) allowing for predictable domain modelling.
Calculated metal tenors at Eagle’s Nest for massive, net-textured and disseminated sulfides are shown in Table 2 and indicate fairly uniform Ni-Cu grades between massive and net textured ore, and thus uniform ratios of pyrrhotite : pentlandite : chalcopyrite, despite variation in sulfide abundances. The massive sulfide intersection in NOT-20-001 closely reflects the average calculated Ni-Cu tenors for the deposit.
Table 1: Assay highlights from 2020 upper domain metallurgical drilling at Eagle’s Nest
|Hole||From (m)||To (m)||Width (m)||Ni (%)||Cu (%)||Co (%)||Pt (ppm)||Pd (ppm)||Au (ppm)||Ag (ppm)||Mineralization Style|
Table 2: Ni-Cu-Co-PGE tenor calculations for Eagle’s Nest sulfides
|Mineralization Type||Average Calculated Tenor* (to 100% sulfide)||Avg. S (%)|
|Ni (%)||Cu (%)||Co (%)||Pt (ppm)||Pd (ppm)|
|Massive sulfide (n=598)||7.7||4.2||0.19||5.5||12.9||32.2|
*Sulfide Tenors calculated as per Kerr (2003): Sulfide mass fraction (Sm) = S% / 36.5; Nitenor = Ni% / Sm ; Cutenor = Cu% / Sm , Cotenor = Co% / Sm , Pttenor = Pt ppm / Sm , Pdtenor = Pd ppm / Sm .