Exploring precious metals in Fiji with Thunderstruck Resources
Some of the richest deposits of metals such as gold, silver, zinc and copper are to be found in geological structures which have been shattered, folded and sheared by volcanic activity. Typically, these rock formations are millions of years old, and like a couch collects loose change, they slowly accumulate deposits of sought-after materials as fluids from deep underground are pumped through the resulting network of veins. It follows, then, that any company that chooses to break volcanic ground deserves a look-in, and it doesn’t get much hotter than the pacific basin’s “Ring of Fire”, on which 75% of the world’s volcanoes are found.
Thunderstruck Resources Ltd. (TSXV: AWE) (“Thunderstruck”) 100% owns four highly prospective deposits that cover almost 7.5 percent of Viti Levu, the main island of Fiji, located on the “Ring of Fire”. The company’s two flagship projects are both volcanogenic massive sulfide ore deposits (VMS) created by hydrothermal and volcanic activity and are most commonly associated with high copper-zinc mineralisation. In fact, historic drill sampling at these sites in the 1970s assayed grades averaging 7% Zn and 1.5% Cu, but some standout results were seen at both projects, with ~12% Zn, ~2% Cu and ~50g/t Ag found in some areas.
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In order to get these superb VMS deposits out of the ground, a significant amount of exploration and delineation is still required, but Thunderstruck owns a further two resources on the island that could readily provide the cash required to later commission all four sites. The Liwa Creek gold prospect features outcrops of highly silicified rock assaying 5.7g/t gold over 7 metres, an outcrop of galena-rich quartz veining featuring up to 36g/t gold, and float samples from various localities have graded up to 11.5g/t gold and 110 g/t silver. Clearly, the section of island on which Thunderstruck are based hosts some truly impressive and valuable features.
With precious metals gaining ground this year (and probably for the next three or so), the company would do well to lead with gold and silver in order to raise the capital necessary to establish what would be a sizeable operation on Viti Levu. Thankfully, the management and technical teams are highly experienced, particularly in the geology of Fiji itself, and inspire great confidence in their ability to bring further fruitful operations to the tropical paradise.
Fiji has a long history of mining and is already host to a range of explorers in various stages of development; the Vatukoula Gold Mine has been operating for the past 80 years, and has produced in excess of 7m ounces of gold, and a further 4.2m ounces remain in ground. Newcrest/Mitsubishi Namosi is a pre-feasibility copper-gold project containing an impressive 2.2bn tonnes @ 0.34% Cu and 0.11 g/t Au, and is similar to Thunderstruck’s Rama Creek porphyry deposit only 20 km to the west.
Fiji is actually a very low-cost option for mining companies, and its proximity to Asian markets makes it a great location for metals extraction. The main island enjoys good infrastructure and access to seaports, and so future logistics should be stress-free. Thunderstruck maintains a remarkably tight share structure for a company with 100% ownership of such large resources; only 34m shares outstanding and currently trading at C$0.10. If you’re the kind of investor who likes it hot, Thunderstruck’s diversified Fiji portfolio is certainly that.
A Sr. Editor and Analyst for InvestorIntel and Managing Director and Founder of Core Consultants, Lara is an internationally recognized expert in the field of ... <Read more about Lara Smith>