7 December 2017
FURTHER GOLD DISCOVERY AT SALINBAS
Ariana Resources plc ("Ariana" or "the Company"), the exploration and development company operating in Turkey, is pleased to announce the results of recent exploration across the Hot Gold Corridor and within its wholly-owned 1 Moz Salinbas Gold Project ("Salinbas" or "the Project"). The Hot Gold Corridor is named after the 4 Moz Hot Maden Au-Cu deposit, located approximately 4 km south of the Project licences.
· Significant c.550 x 150m zone of precious and base-metal anomalism discovered at Salinbas North.
· Peak results in soils include: 3.83 g/t Au + 108 g/t Ag, 2.97 g/t Au + 94 g/t Ag and 1.67 g/t Au + 91 g/t Ag.
· Several precious and base-metal enriched extensions of the existing Salinbas resource demonstrate potential for further resource growth.
· Outstanding silver grades of up to 505 g/t with significant base-metal potential demonstrated in previous drilling at Salinbas, including:
o 1.4m @ 24.9% Zn + 20.0% Pb + 0.23% Cu + 0.76 g/t Au + 505 g/t Ag
o 11.5m @ 1.8% Zn + 1.6% Pb + 3.29 g/t Au + 29 g/t Ag
· Ample funds available for follow-up work during 2018, with other exploration and development spend across the portfolio expected to be supported from cash-flow.
Dr. Kerim Sener, Managing Director, commented:
"Salinbas already contains a JORC resource of c. 1 Moz gold. The latest exploration has demonstrated opportunities both within and outside of known areas to further grow the resource. The Salinbas Zone extends to the northeast and also to the southwest, with potential for both precious and base-metals. The new discovery of Salinbas North also demonstrates that Salinbas is not an isolated zone of mineralisation and that considerable potential exists for other "Salinbas-type" deposits to be discovered in the vicinity along prospective geological horizons. At the Ardala Zone, impressive previous drill intercepts from surface including 135m @ 2.28 g/t Au, with significant copper and molybdenum, demonstrate the importance of this gold-rich porphyry to the development of mineralisation in its periphery."
This announcement contains inside information for the purposes of Article 7 of EU Regulation 596/2014.
Dr. Kerim Sener invites shareholders to join him in a live Twitter discussion @ArianaResources from 12-12.30pm on Thursday 7th December. All questions posed will be compiled and published to Ariana's website for any shareholders who do not have access to Twitter. The Company also invites shareholders to submit questions offline via its website https://arianaresources.com/ariana-questions.
During the Summer and Autumn of 2017, the Ariana exploration team conducted a comprehensive exploration programme to better understand the prospectivity of the Hot Gold Corridor and the Salinbas Project area, with the aim of defining high-priority exploration targets. Following the announcement of results from the Ardala Zone (see release dated 14th November 2017), this announcement focuses on the exploration conducted over the Salinbas Zone (Figure 1).
New 1:2,000 scale geological mapping, coupled with systematic conventional and pXRF soil sampling identified several important aspects of the local geology and the distribution of mineralisation. Salinbas is now classified as an intermediate sulphidation carbonate-replacement type epithermal deposit, formed by the propagation of mineralising fluids from the Ardala Cu-Au-Mo porphyry and potentially other intrusions in the district. The primary orebody at Salinbas is located between two relatively gently northeast dipping (approximately 30 degree) geological units. These units include the thickly bedded reefal limestones of the Ziyarettepe Formation (Palaeocene) and the overlying calcareous shale and mudstones of the Kizilcik Formation (Eocene), which both dip generally towards the Ardala porphyry.
A grid of 198 in-fill conventional soil samples were collected from the northern periphery of the Salinbas Zone, where historic data was limited (Figure 2). The soil geochemical results from this area identified a significantly anomalous 300 x 50m soil anomaly exceeding 1,000 ppb Au (1 g/t Au). The peak soil results from this area included:
· 3.09 g/t Au + 5.4 g/t Ag
· 2.95 g/t Au + 10.5 g/t Ag
· 2.88 g/t Au + 6.2 g/t Ag
A further 14 samples exceeded 1,000 ppb Au. Significant areas such as this highlight the additional potential for further resources to be discovered at the Salinbas Zone, even within proximity of the surface. There is also some evidence to suggest that the main mineralised contact at Salinbas is cut to the north by a possibly later porphyry, but then continues northward and wraps around to join up with the Salinbas North discovery, as referred to below.
In addition to the sampling referred to above, geological mapping has determined that the mineralising fluids responsible for the development of the Salinbas deposit were not restricted to a single stratigraphic horizon (Figure 3). It is apparent that at least two major stratigraphic horizons are mineralised within the Salinbas Zone and there is now evidence to demonstrate that this mineralisation also occurs across the wider area (Figure 2 and 3). Significantly anomalous base-metal results from the newly defined mineralised horizons discovered at Ardala North, more than 1.2km away from Salinbas (see release dated 14th November 2017), suggest mineralising fluids also propagated along the contact between the Ziyarettepe Formation and the underlying bedded andesitic tuff and agglomerates of the Makenet Formation (Upper Cretaceous).
Re-logging of several key Salinbas drill holes with unusual and significantly elevated base-metal mineralisation has revealed that this lower geological contact may have already been tested by some of the deeper drill-holes at Salinbas. However, due to earlier interpretations, which are now understood to be incorrect, the significance of this lower mineralised contact had not been placed correctly into its wider geological context. This context is now far better understood as a result of recent geological mapping and sampling, and improved modelling of the Salinbas orebody, particularly for the base-metals (Figure 4 and 5). Significant base-metal (with associated precious metal) intercepts from previous drilling, some of which may intersect the lower geological contact, include:
· SALH057 - 1.4m @ 24.9% Zn + 20.0% Pb + 0.23% Cu + 0.76 g/t Au + 505 g/t Ag
· SALH008 - 11.5m @ 1.8% Zn + 1.6% Pb + 3.29 g/t Au + 29 g/t Ag
· SALH033 - 9.4m @ 2.0% Zn + 1.1% Pb + 0.35% Cu + 3.37 g/t Au + 59 g/t Ag
The exploration team are currently working on plans for a drilling programme to be conducted on some of the areas referred to above, which is under consideration for 2018.
254 conventional and pXRF soil samples, acquired from an area approximately 0.8km north of Salinbas, also identified a 550 x 150m zone containing exceptionally anomalous Au (typically in the 1,000 ppb range), Ag, Cu, Pb and Zn geochemistry (Figure 2). The geology of this zone matches the same horizon in which the Salinbas orebody is developed. Consequently, this area will be referred to as Salinbas North, as the stratigraphic location and style of this mineralisation matches that of Salinbas itself. These samples returned with values including:
· 3.83 g/t Au + 108 g/t Ag
· 2.97 g/t Au + 94 g/t Ag
· 1.67 g/t Au + 91 g/t Ag
Such exceptional soil geochemical results highlight the potential for near-surface mineralisation at Salinbas North. This new discovery also suggests that the potential footprint of the Salinbas mineralised horizon around the Ardala porphyry, where not stoped-out by possibly post-mineralisation intrusions, is far more extensive than considered previously. Furthermore, it is notable that this potential northern extension of the Salinbas mineralised horizon is about ten times more enriched in silver than the Salinbas orebody itself, based on the soil geochemistry.
Figure 1: Simplified interpretive geological map of the Ardala Porphyry and surrounding area, identifying Ardala Main as the core of a nested multiphase intrusive complex, part of which is significantly enriched in gold, copper and molybdenum. A circular 'ring' feature comprising intrusive rocks of broadly the same age as Ardala Main, encircle all of the prospects and deposits defined at the northern end of the Hot Gold Corridor. At least two geological horizons are identified, which host additional potential for gold and base-metal mineralisation. The position of the Salinbas North and Ardala North discoveries are also shown.
Figure 2: Soil gold geochemical map for the Salinbas and Ardala zones, showing the position of the Salinbas orebody (in red) relative to other geological and mineralised features. The position of Salinbas North and Ardala North are also shown, including the results of recent sampling. The Hot Maden surface footprint is also shown to scale relative to the mapped features at Salinbas. Not all drill holes are shown in this map; only those that were used in the development of the current understanding of the geology.
Figure 3: Schematic and simplified stratigraphic section through the Salinbas and Ardala zones, showing the position of mineralisation determined from recent work. The lower target is barely tested by drilling to date and the Salinbas mineralised horizon is more extensive than previously considered. Potentially economic mineralisation is encountered across all areas identified with a yellow star.
Figure 4: Map showing the contoured grade-true thickness data for gold, projected to surface at the Salinbas Zone. Areas showing good continuity of mineralisation are identified by white arrows, in which future drilling will need to be targeted. There are several areas within and around the Salinbas orebody that will require further drill testing. Not all drill holes are shown in this map; only those that were used in the development of the current understanding of the geology.
Figure 5: Map showing the contoured grade-true thickness data for zinc, projected to surface at the Salinbas Zone. Areas showing good continuity of mineralisation are identified by white arrows, in which future drilling will need to be targeted. The very high zinc grades encountered on the southern flank of Salinbas suggests the influence of potentially another mineralised porphyry body to the south. Not all drill holes are shown in this map; only those that were used in the development of the current understanding of the geology.
Ariana Resources plc
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7407 3616
Michael de Villiers, Chairman
Kerim Sener, Managing Director
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Beaumont Cornish Limited
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7628 3396
Roland Cornish / Felicity Geidt
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Beaufort Securities Limited
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7382 8300
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Panmure Gordon (UK) Limited
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7886 2500
Adam James / Tom Salvesen
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Dr Kerim Sener, BSc (Hons), MSc, PhD, is the Managing Director of Ariana Resources plc. A graduate of the University of Southampton in Geology, he also holds a Master's degree from the Royal School of Mines (Imperial College, London) in Mineral Exploration and a doctorate from the University of Western Australia. He is a Fellow of The Geological Society of London and has worked in geological research and mineral consultancy in Africa, Australia and Europe. He has read and approved the technical disclosure in this regulatory announcement.
About Ariana Resources
Ariana is an exploration and development company focused on epithermal gold-silver and porphyry copper-gold deposits in Turkey. The Company is developing a portfolio of prospective licences originally selected on the basis of its in-house geological and remote-sensing database.
The Company's flagship assets are its Kiziltepe and Tavsan gold projects which form the Red Rabbit Gold Project. Both contain a series of prospects, within two prolific mineralised districts in the Western Anatolian Volcanic and Extensional (WAVE) Province in western Turkey. This Province hosts the largest operating gold mines in Turkey and remains highly prospective for new porphyry and epithermal deposits. These core projects, which are separated by a distance of 75km, form part of a 50:50 Joint Venture with Proccea Construction Co. The Kiziltepe Sector of the Red Rabbit Project is fully-permitted and is currently in production. The total resource inventory at the Red Rabbit Project and wider project area stands at c. 605,000 ounces of gold equivalent. At Kiziltepe a Net Smelter Return ("NSR") royalty of up to 2.5% on production is payable to Franco-Nevada Corporation. At Tavsan an NSR royalty of up to 2% on future production is payable to Sandstorm Gold.
In north-eastern Turkey, Ariana owns 100% of the Salinbas Gold Project, comprising the Salinbas gold-silver deposit and the Ardala copper-gold-molybdenum porphyry among other prospects. The total resource inventory of the Salinbas project area is c. 1 million ounces of gold equivalent. A NSR royalty of up to 2% on future production is payable to Eldorado Gold Corporation.
Beaufort Securities Limited and Panmure Gordon (UK) Limited are joint brokers to the Company and Beaumont Cornish Limited is the Company's Nominated Adviser.
For further information on Ariana you are invited to visit the Company's website at www.arianaresources.com.
Glossary of Technical Terms:
"Ag" the chemical symbol for silver;
"Au" the chemical symbol for gold;
"Cu" the chemical symbol for copper;
"g/t" grams per tonne;
"Pb" the chemical symbol for lead;
"pXRF" portable X-ray Fluorescence handheld device that uses X-rays to excite matter at the atomic level. A built in CPU and display on the back of the unit provide live geochemical results within seconds for elements ranging from magnesium through to the heaviest metals such as uranium. A three filter 50 second sample scan is typical. Taking multiple readings across a sample grid allows the user to very rapidly build up a geochemical map, outlining potential pathfinder elements associated with mineralisation, lithological boundaries and intensity or zoning of mineralised areas;
"Mo" the chemical symbol for molybdenum;
"Zn" the chemical symbol for zinc.
This information is provided by RNS