Development & Exploration

Exploration and mineral resource development is an integral part of our future.
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Our exploration strategy includes:

  • enhancing our knowledge and mapping in and around of our existing Mt. Fubilan pit;
  • exploration of near mine locations (within 5-10 km of the mine site); and
  • regional exploration.

The current Ok Tedi Mining Limited (OTML) exploration program is centred on five exploration licences covering about 680 square kilometres.

In line with a re-invigorated exploration strategy that is focused on the near-mine environment where the mineralisation potential is highest and easily accessible, the majority of the exploration licences are located along the prospective ‘Ok Tedi Corridor’.

This corridor is a deep-seated geologic feature that trends north-northeast through the Ok Tedi deposit into the West Sepik Province where currently, all known copper and gold mineralisation in the region is located.

Mt. Fubilan Mineral Resource Development and Exploration

Discovery and definition of additional mineral resources within the Special Mining Lease (SML) in close proximity to the processing plant remains an exploration priority.

The exploration team have a number of near mine programs at various stages. The primary aim is to grow the mineral resource base and subsequent ore reserves through focused, safe exploration. Immediate attention is on replacing resources mined from within the SML.

This includes converting resources already drilled to the appropriate density in the East Wall of Mt. Fubilan pit to reserves and identifying other targets that can be proven up and converted into reserves.

Exploration in the Paris (West Wall South) and Sulphide Creek (New York and Wellington) areas, proximal to the current pit are delivering very promising results. These areas are the current focus for near mine exploration to increase the Mineral Resource in the short to medium-term.

Near-mine Exploration

OTML has continued to explore outside of the SML as part of a wider regional exploration program on granted leases. OTML holds several brownfields strategic exploration leases in the Western Province.

The exploration effort has included the assessment of geophysical and geochemical data from various anomalies, mapping and sampling programs and drilling of prospective targets.

The most prominent target areas include Townsville, Kauwol, Anju and Dorongo licences.

Townsville Prospect

The Townsville prospect, located approximately 4 km north from the processing plant, is the most advanced exploration project.

The Townsville Prospect is hosted within the Pnyang Formation (Miocene age, 5 to 23 Ma), comprising of near-surface high-grade gold hydrothermal mineralisation and fault breccia’s grading up to 60g/t gold and deeper copper-gold calc-silicate skarns.

The currently known copper-gold mineralisation at Townsville extends laterally for over 500 m and vertically for at least 600 m.

New geological models have been developed as a result of the discovery of deeper primary copper, gold and silver skarn mineralisation through the recent drilling programs.