Excellon Resources' R&D Strategy Bears FruitBy Alejandro Ehrenberg | Wed, 12/02/2020 - 14:02
Excellon Resources reported initial diamond drilling at the Silver City project in Saxony, Germany, with assays from an additional seven holes outstanding and a further two holes to be completed before year-end. In addition to Silver City, Excellon has projects in Idaho, a producing mine in Durango and an exploration project in Zacatecas. The results in Germany speak to the company’s R&D philosophy, which has also obtained strong results in Mexico.
“We have intersected high-grade silver mineralization in the first holes drilled on the Silver City project in modern times. We have tested seven targets and have intersected mineralization in almost every hole including multiple high-grade silver species and fine-grained native silver. We have a high-grade, district-scale epithermal silver system confirmed in initial drilling and we are now focused on defining wider zones of mineralization. Also, we have advanced our privilege to operate in the area and have developed strong local relationships from landholders to regulators that will be integral to our long-term exploration plans for the project,” Ben Pullinger, Senior Vice President of Geology & Corporate Development, said in a press release.
Excellon reported it has partnered with Grenoble-based Sisprobe to develop a 2D passive seismic survey of the Munzig target in Silver city. The program is currently underway and is using ongoing diamond drilling as the sound source for the seismic probes. Moreover, Excellon continues to work with the Helmholtz Institute Freiberg (HIF) under an R&D agreement. The company has provided HIF with data and drill core samples from Silver City through which HIF can test exploration technologies, including hyperspectral analysis of drill core.
The collaborations with Sisprobe and HIF are in line with Excellon’s belief that exploration is the R&D of the mining industry. During an interview with MBN, Brendan Cahill, President & CEO, explained that Excellon’s success depends on discovery of high-grade deposits. “A great deal of exploration is being done in Mexico to take advantage of the current precious metals bull market, but there needs to be more gold exploration. Silver has generally trailed gold significantly, with the silver to gold ratio presently at a very high level. The only thing that can survive this is grade and quality,” Cahill said.
He explained that it is Excellon’s high-grade that keeps the company sustainable. He pointed to companies like SilverCrest Metals, which is developing a mine in Sonora, as an example of the importance of exploring for high-quality assets. “For these companies, metal prices and treatment charges are irrelevant. You need to explore and take risks to actually make those kinds of discoveries,” Cahill concluded.
Excellon is applying its exploration philosophy in Mexico at its wholly-owned Evolución project, an intermediate stage polymetallic silver-zinc-lead-gold exploration project at the border of Durango and Zacatecas. Since becoming the operator of the property, Excellon has conducted geological mapping, rock and soil geochemical sampling, ground geophysical surveys, fluid inclusion studies and diamond drilling documented by detailed core logging. Between 2005 and 2019, a total of 298 core drillholes (91,527m) were drilled throughout the Evolución Project by drilling company SEM and Excellon.