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Nova-Style “Eye” Feature Identified Within Albany-Fraser Tenement; Conductor also Identified within “Eye” Feature Detailed Airborne Electromagnetic Survey to Commence

Terrain Minerals Limited (ASX: TMX) (‘Terrain’ or the ‘Company’) is pleased to advise that exploration tenement E63/2447, which forms part of the Company’s 100% owned Lort River Project near Esperance, Western Australia, has recently been granted. This tenement potentially hosts the next major magmatic nickel-copper discovery within the Albany-Fraser Belt of Western Australia, being home to Nova-Bollinger nickel-copper ore bodies, whose discovery by Sirius Resources in 2012.


  • E63/2447 located within the same geological belt as that hosting the Nova-Bollinger ore bodies
  • Nova-Bollinger style magmatic nickel-copper ore bodies tend to occur as clusters along a Belt
  • Nova-Bollinger style “eye” feature interpreted within Terrain’s tenement E63/2447
  • Conductor recorded within the southern part of the “eye” feature within Terrain’s tenement E63/2447
  • Terrain committed to fast-track exploration with the goal of achieving exploration success similar to other companies operating in the belt
The Albany-Fraser Belt in southwest Western Australia is a proven host of company-making deposits. In addition to the 5-million-ounce Tropicana Gold, the Belt also plays host to the Nova-Bollinger nickel-copper deposit, which was discovered by Sirius Resources (former ASX code SIR) in 2012 and was subsequently purchased by Independence Group (ASX: IGO) for $1.8 billion (see IGO’s announcement dated 25 May 2015 for full details of this transaction) (Figure 1).

The discovery of the Nova-Bollinger nickel-copper deposit (see Figure 2) was a result of Sirius Resources recognising the importance of an “eye” feature within the aeromagnetic images over their Fraser Range tenement, which proved to be the geophysical signature of the intrusion associated with the nickel-copper ore bodies (Figure 3).

Armed with the knowledge, Terrain intends to benefit from the considerable resources already committed to searching for repetitions of this eye-like feature within the northern half of the Albany-Fraser Belt which include Independent Group and Legend Mining to name only two (see the ASX announcement Legend Mining dated 14 February 2023 as just one example of the companies placing an importance on the eye-feature when exploring for nickel-copper within the Albany-Fraser Belt).

Magmatic nickel-copper deposits, such as Nova-Bollinger, usually occur as clusters suggesting that just like the equivalent Thompson Belt in Canada. To quote Independence Group (ASX: IGO) “The Nova-Bollinger discovery, along with other known magmatic nickel copper sulphide occurrences in the Fraser Range, are proof of the fertility of the region for more discoveries, and IGO’s exploration team is convinced that this belt should host multiple significant magmatic Ni-Cu sulphide deposits …” (Exploration | IGO Limited - Making A Difference).

Recognising the industry’s focus had yet to extend to the southern half of the Belt, Terrain undertook a review of the open-file aeromagnetic data covering the favourable geological settings south of the Nova-Bollinger ore bodies. This work by Terrain was rewarded when a possible repetition of the Nova-style eye feature was observed within a vacant tenement area between Terrain’s existing Lort River tenements package (Figure 3). Appreciating the significance of this distinctive “eye” feature in the aeromagnetics, Terrain subsequently submitted a tenement application over this prospective nickel-copper target, with the resulting tenement (E63/2447) having now been granted to the Company.

As a result of the grant of E63/2447, Terrain’s tenement package within the Albany-Fraser Belt totals 640 square kilometres of granted tenure.

Terrain is committed to fast-tracking exploration of this potential repetition of the Nova-Bollinger style magnetic nickel-copper in tenement E63/2447 and, as such, is seeking to award the airborne electromagnetic (AEM) survey contract to the preferred geophysical contractor in the coming weeks.

AEM offers a proven, fast, and inexpensive method for detecting potential nickel-copper ore bodies across the Albany-Fraser Belt, with Sirius Resources repeatedly expressing a view that electromagnetics continued to be a reliable exploration tool during their exploration and development of the Nova-Bollinger nickel-copper deposit.

It should be noted that a single line of AEM has previously been flown over Terrain’s tenement E63/2447 by Geoscience Australia as part of the Australian Government’s ongoing effort to acquire AEM data over the continent (Product catalogue - Geoscience Australia (ga.gov.au)). The line spacing of the Geoscience Australia airborne survey was 20 kilometres and had limited depth penetration. Encouragingly, though, this single survey line appears to have successfully detected an interpreted conductor at the southern end of Terrain’s “eye” feature (Figure 4).

Further work is continuing in relation to modelling the Geoscience Australia AEM data. However, the presence of such a conductor only serves to strengthen Terrain’s commitment to exploring E63/2447, given the project seems to keep ticking boxes in terms of its prospectivity for Nova-Bollinger-style nickel-copper mineralisation.

  • We are in the same geological belt as that hosting the Nova-Bollinger ore bodies,
  • We have an interpreted characteristic “eye” feature in the aeromagnetic data over our tenement,
  • We have a conductor within the southern part of the “eye” feature,
  • We know that Nova-Bollinger style magmatic nickel-copper ore bodies tend to occur as clusters along a Belt (as it’s the case for across the equivalent Thomson Belt in Canada),
  • We know that exploration by others to date have focused on the northern half of the Albany-Fraser Belt, but have had limited exploration success to date,
  • We assume, therefore, that this means that the clusters of yet-to-be-discovered magmatic nickel-copper ore bodies are more likely to be located in the southern half of the Belt,
  • Terrain holds a strategic land position in the southern half of the Belt (with is virtually untouched by historic magnetic nickel-copper focused exploration), and
  • We are committed to fast track our exploration with the goal of exploration success similar to other companies operating in the belt.

Figure 1. Terrain Minerals’ 100% owned Lort Rover Project is located approximately 50 kilometres northwest of Esperance, and within the highly prospective Albany-Fraser Belt, being home to Nova-Bollinger nickel-copper ore bodies.

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This article includes content from Terrain Minerals Limited, licensed for the purpose of publishing on Investing News Australia. This article does not constitute financial product advice. It is your responsibility to perform proper due diligence before acting upon any information provided here. Please refer to our full disclaimer here.


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