|Western Wheatbelt Region, Western Australia
|Exploration licences staked in 2018-2020
The Julimar Nickel-Copper-Platinum Group Element (Ni-Cu-PGE) Exploration Project forms part of Chalice’s large-scale exploration portfolio in the new West Yilgarn Province. The new province is entirely unexplored and is considered one of the most exciting new nickel sulphide provinces globally.
Chalice is systematically exploring the project area targeting greenfield high-grade Ni-Cu-PGE discoveries. The Company is utilising low-impact and innovative, leading practice exploration techniques, recognising the environmental sensitivities of the region. Exploration at the Julimar Project is being progressed separately from the Gonneville Project.
The Julimar Ni-Cu-PGE Exploration Project is located in the western wheatbelt region, north-east of Perth, Western Australia.
The exploration licence holding surrounds the Gonneville Project, and includes areas of farmland and State Forest.
The Exploration Project is centred on a newly recognised >30km long geological belt, the Julimar Complex. The mafic-ultramafic intrusive belt is prospective for magmatic sulphide mineralisation and has a rare chonolith-like geometry, which is similar to other major mafic-ultramafic orthomagmatic systems worldwide that host some of the world’s largest nickel copper+/-PGE deposits, including Norilsk-Talnakh and Jinchuan (Barnes et al, 20161).
The Julimar Complex hosts the Gonneville Deposit at the southern end on farmland, but remains largely unexplored in surrounding areas.
Low impact, broad-spaced drilling along the Julimar Complex commenced in 2022 and has intersected the same prospective mafic-ultramafic geology as found at the Gonneville Deposit. Several encouraging zones of mineralisation have been intersected over a strike length of ~10km, confirming the Complex hosts a large-scale mineral system with the potential for multiple discrete Ni-Cu-PGE deposits.
Additional exploration drilling within the Hartog-Hooley-Dampier strike length, as well as initial drilling on existing access tracks at the Baudin-Jansz-Torres targets at the northern end of the Complex, is expected to commence in late Q3 2023.
Recognising the sensitivities of the region, Chalice is utilising innovative, low-impact exploration techniques in vegetated areas. Our exploration covers a small portion of the Julimar State Forest, which is strictly governed by a Conservation Management Plan – approved by the WA Government and developed in conjunction with the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions.
Exploration is staged, starting with a desktop review of existing datasets and followed by soil sampling and geophysical surveys. This allows large areas to be screened for potential drill targets without any environmental impact. Chalice is also conducting exploration drilling within existing disturbed areas where possible, including drilling on an extensive network of recreational access tracks in the State Forest.
Other innovations include the use of small, track-mounted diamond drill rigs with telescopic masts and above-ground drilling fluids systems in all vegetated areas, which avoids trees and removes the need for any mechanised clearing of vegetation.
Comprehensive baseline flora and fauna surveys have been conducted across 6,000 hectares by teams of specialist botanists and zoologists. The intent of these surveys is to gather information specific to the region, to avoid and mitigate impacts on the conservation values of the State Forest and farmland during drilling activities.
Chalice has engaged Yued and Whadjuk Traditional Owners to conduct cultural heritage surveys to better understand the cultural values of the area. Drilling activities in the State Forest are monitored by Traditional Owner representatives, with over 70 Yued and Whadjuk members participating in this work since 2021.
Learn more about our environmental stewardship here.