NORTHERN Cobalt has increased the resource at its Stanton cobalt deposit by 41%, from 850 tonnes to 1200t, and with further assays to come is expecting further growth, although it is also planning to drill almost 40 newly identified targets in the wider Wollogorang project.
The company said the resource upgrade, the first since the company started drilling last year, was a positive start in understanding the cobalt potential of the wider Wollogorang area, which is 870km from Darwin close to the Queensland border.
The 1200t resource is contained within 942,000t of rock grading 0.13% cobalt, 0.06% nickel and 0.12% copper, and it has shifted from inferred to indicated status.
The grades have dipped slightly from the earlier resource: 500,000t grading 0.17% cobalt, 0.09% nickel and 0.17% copper. That's despite early indications in the 57-hole RC program showing cobalt grades up to 2.13%.
Managing director Michael Schwarz said metallurgical testing would provide a valuable insight into the possible processing options, while the company was looking further afield, with drilling to start next month.
"Now the wet season is nearing the end, exploration drilling will commence in the coming weeks to test 37 newly identified targets, using lighter and less expensive drilling rigs in a busy 2018 field season for Northern Cobalt," he said.
The drilling will use vehicle mounted aircore rig for initial shallow drill testing to 40m, which should see each of the 37 targets drilled in a single day.
Indicative results should be available immediately based on handheld XRF.
Once the program is complete a larger RC rig will be used to assess the best targets.
The project was last drilled by CRA/Rio Tinto in the early 1990s and has an exploration target of 10 million grading 0.12 % cobalt, 0.06% nickel and 0.3% copper in the immediate vicinity of Stanton.
The South Australia-based junior listed last September following a A$4.21 million capital raising.
Shares in the junior last changed hands at 34c, capitalising the company at $16.5 million.