African Consolidated Resources plc / Ticker: AFCR / Index: AIM / Sector: Mining
29 October 2010
African Consolidated Resources plc ('ACR' or 'the Company')
Technical and Operational Update


African Consolidated Resources Plc, the AIM listed resource company focused in Zimbabwe, is pleased to announce a technical and operational update in respect of its extensive portfolio of primarily gold, nickel, platinum, diamond and rock phosphate projects.





ACR CEO Andrew Cranswick said, "While we have had some frustrating delays in delivery of service and availability of suitable equipment, excellent progress and consistently mineralised results continue to emanate from our Gadzema gold projects and ground consolidation has met our best expectations on the area.  Gold understandably forms the main focus of our resource definition efforts for the near future as target definition continues on other projects.  We continue to work towards a gold production phase at Pickstone Peerless and hope to make further announcements in this regard."


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For further information visit or please contact:


Andrew Cranswick                  African Consolidated Resources plc +44 (0) 7920 189010
Roy Tucker                         African Consolidated Resources plc+44 (0) 1622 816918
+44 (0) 7920 189012
Richard Swindells                 Ambrian Partners Limited +44 (0) 20 7634 4700
Jen BoorerAmbrian Partners Limited+44 (0) 20 7634 4700
Hugo de SalisSt Brides Media & Finance Ltd+44 (0) 20 7236 1177
Susie GeliherSt Brides Media & Finance Ltd+44 (0) 20 7236 1177




Gadzema Belt - gold
Blue Rock:  
Further prospective ground to the immediate north of Blue Rock (the Rainbow Claims) has now been purchase-optioned and this together with the Berks claims to the east and the Red Hat claims to the south cover 440 ha (4.4 sq km) in total and more than treble the original strike length available.  Work has commenced on the Berks and Red Hat options.  


Since the Company's last technical update in May 2010, 34 holes for 5504 m of RC drilling  has been completed over a parallel mineralised trend about 500m NE of the original Blue Rock discovery, within  the Berks claims.  Here the option allows ACR to purchase the claims in full at any time before February 2013.  Lines were drilled on 80m spacings across 1km of strike, angled 60 degrees west.  The central 500m of the drilled area has returned encouraging results, similar to the main Blue Rock area, and results for the last 15 holes, mainly southern extensions, are awaited.


Table 1 - Drilling Summary


Drill Hole Type


Blue Rock & extensions
  Total no of holes  Metres drilled since last report (May 2010) Metres drilled total on project
RAB657-9,810- ongoing
Diamond Core4 676 on-going
Giant Mine   
Diamond Core1120702070


Table 2 - Significant intercepts in RC holes, Blue Rock extensions


Hole IDFrom (m)To
BRRC 79223412m @ 3.2 g/t Au
including22253m @ 11.3g/t Au
BRRC 8086915m @ 1.6 g/t Au
BRRC 8251598m @ 4.2 g/t Au
BRRC 8338435m @ 1.5 g/t Au
ditto506515m @ 1.0 g/t Au
ditto74773m @ 2.8 g/t Au
BRRC 841021097m @ 3.1 g/t Au
BRRC 8588913m @ 9.6 g/t Au
BRRC 87879811m @ 1.5 g/t Au
ditto1071136m @ 3.1 g/t Au
ditto1221275m @ 1.2 g/t Au
BRRC 8813814810m @ 1.2 Au
ditto15117524m @ 1.7 g/t Au
BRRC 891321364m @ 2.2 g/t Au
ditto1491578m @ 2.6 g/t Au

*80m linespacing. Im fire assays at 0.5g/t lower cut, includes up to 2m internal waste, no top cut.
Results available to hole 93 of 108


The geology in the new extensions is similar to Blue Rock - dominated by stockwork mineralisation in felsic bodies intruded into talc schists and minor banded iron formations.  Numerous targets exist along strike, defined using potassium-channel radiometrics, aeromagnetics, and detailed field mapping.


The mineralised trend NW of Blue Rock appears to run north for about 1.5km to join the Shlegani prospect, where five historical RC holes returned some significant intercepts (best 12m @ 2.06 g/t in SHRC 03 and 7m @ 2.5 g/t in SHRC 06), and 500m to the south the mineralisation trends into the Red Hat option claims, which contains the old Red Hat mine.


While awaiting all RC assay results on the current drilling, ACR is pattern RAB drilling the large Red Hat block  (27 ha),  to focus in on the mineralised trends prior to RC drilling.  


Further RC infill drilling to 40m linespacing on the Berks option after the Red Hat programme will allow a JORC Resource to be calculated.


Giant Mine:  The current JORC compliant Inferred Resource at Giant Mine stands at 300,000oz.  The recent RC and diamond drilling has extended the mineralisation to depth and has also penetrated a thick diorite intrusion at the south end of the mine, where earlier RC drilling was unable to penetrate the hard formation at depth.  The diorite contains broad gold intersections where it cuts the main shear zone of the Giant Mine. Cutting of core and assaying is underway, ahead of an incremental Resource upgrade.


Pickstone-Peerless - gold


Six large-diameter core holes for approximately 1,200m were drilled into the Peerless orebody for metallurgical and geotechnical test work.  Processing of the core is in progress.  


Chisanya Carbonatite - phosphate


Recent mineralogy studies by SGS laboratories using a scanning electron microscope (QUEMSCAN) and XRD analysis for modal mineral assemblages has indicated that >85% of the apatite crystals are well liberated by grinding, and should be amenable to flotation.  Subsequent flotation tests however were complicated by iron oxide weathering in the surface samples and a float upgrade to an apatite concentrate was difficult to obtain.  SGS recommended that un-oxidised samples should be obtained by drilling before carrying out any detailed float tests.


Two core holes totalling 602m were completed in September.  They were drilled at 45 degrees dip into the base of Baradanga Hill to obtain fresh rock for metallurgical flotation testwork on the apatite (P2O5) ore, and to investigate the geometry and thickness of the sub-vertical veins hosting the phosphate mineralisation.  


As the vein systems appear to form semi-concentric rings around the outer edge of the Baradanga intrusion, the holes were oriented east-west and north-south to bisect the target zones at right angles. The first hole, CNDD01, oriented 270 degrees, intersected only thin carbonatite veins in a predominant mass of altered country rock (syenite and fenite).  However the second hole, CNDD02, oriented at 200 degrees, intersected thick zones of mineralised carbonatite from 134m downhole until end-of-hole at 300m.  In this section, apatite mineralisation was strongly developed and of significantly higher grade than current southern African carbonatite deposits (Dorowa 6.5% to 8%, Palabora 6.9 to 8.6%).  The initial assays have been taken using a hand-held Niton XRF analyser, at 20cm intervals down the core, and averaged to 1m intervals.  Assays on un-crushed material are likely to be erratic but ACR has run correlation tests comparing coarse-crushed Chishanya phosphate mineralisation against laboratory assays on pulps, where the Niton reads up to 50% below the laboratory value.  Hence the values below are likely to err on the conservative.  Twenty-five surface samples of apatite material previously submitted to  SGS laboratories, Johannesburg, ranged from  0.26% to 25.3% P2O5, averaging 12.3%.



Table 3:  Significant Phosphate intersections, Chishana project


Hole IDFrom (m)To
CNDD02134.316126.7m @ 6.4 % P2O5
 187.4205.918.5m @ 20.6 % P2O5
 228.32389.7m @ 19.8 % P2O5
 275.6300.324.9m @ 11.6 % P2O5

Further drilling is required to establish that the volume of phosphate mineralisation reaches economic thresholds. This will be deferred until next year due to the wet season and budget constraints. Meanwhile mineralogy and flotation tests can be carried out on the fresh core.





Regional gold exploration


Chakari Gold:


No field work was done in the period, and trenching or drilling is deferred to conserve cash burn.




Cedric Copper


The Cedric project covers approximately 1,400m strike of surface copper mineralisation over the old Cedric mine workings.  This area was last explored in the 1960s, and lies in the Proterozoic Makonde copperbelt.  Five diamond drillholes previously reported have been submitted for assay.


Assays from the first hole intersected thick mineralisation at moderate grades;


18m @ 1.3% Cu from 31-49m (includes 10m @ 2% Cu)


Results from the remaining four holes are awaited.


A heli-borne VTEM survey is planned over the Cedric trend as soon as possible, subject to equipment availability.


Horseshoe Nickel


Pitting has now been completed over most of the claims area (14 sq km) Pits were dug on a 100m x 100m grid and channel samples taken at 20cm intervals down the pits. Over 750 pits have been hand-dug and channel sampled to date.


Although mineralisation appears to form a fairly consistent horizontal sheet at surface, 1-3m thick and grading 0.5-1.5% Ni, the pitting and recent detailed regolith mapping has identified thicker and higher grade laterite development on remnant weathering surfaces related to Post-Gondwana and Pan-African planation surfaces, developed at ca. 1700ma and ca. 1550ma, respectively.  Although restricted in area to siliceous cappings (known as birbirite), these are more favourable targets due to increased thickness and grade.  Pitting can only test these horizons to about 3m before safety becomes an issue, hence a track has been constructed into the area to allow a small tracked RAB rig to test an initial area.


Column leach metallurgical testing, planned for this quarter, has been deferred until the drilling obtains full-depth intersections beneath the birbirite caps.  RAB drilling should commence this month, but many areas are too steep for easy access and a portable rig may have to be imported to test the higher areas.


Should the birbirite caps become the principal target, ground consolidation in the area may be required to amass a critical tonnage.


Perseverance Nickel


A heli-borne electromagnetic (EM) programme, planned to cover the 30km long nickel prospective horizon of the Perseverance Greenstone Belt, is awaiting availability of EM equipment in the country.  Discussions are underway with two companies who may be able to source a suitable EM system in Dec-January.  EM conductors will be identified and drill tested for nickel sulphides as part of ongoing exploration during 2011.


Mphoengs NI-PGE
ACR holds approximately 11km of strike of extensions of the Tati nickel belt into Zimbabwe, which is prospective for mafic/ultramafic hosted nickel and PGE models such as the Phoenix and Selkirk mines in Botswana.  Data reviews of previous exploration indicates that no significant surface mineralisation has been found, hence deeper search methods are required.  Electromagnetic surveys proved very effective on the Botswana Ni-PGE deposits, hence an EM survey is planned as soon as a suitable contractor is available.


Snakes Head PGE
As previously announced, four short diamond holes have been planned and sited to intersect the P1 platinum reefs on the recently identified Fundumwi Block of this northern subchamber of the Great Dyke.  The mineralogy and ultramafic stratigraphy of the Fundumwi Block suggests that the PGE reefs in this area may be higher grade than elsewhere in the chamber.  Due to the very rugged terrain man-portable or heli-portable drills are required.  These have proved difficult to obtain and quotes for these continue to be sought.


Regional Diamonds


A combination of ACR's historical diamond database and recent regional exploration has defined areas containing significant clusters of kimberlite indicator minerals.   Geophysical surveys are continuing to be delayed by equipment malfunction but are expected to resume in November.


Zambia - Nkombwa Hill, Rare Earths, Phosphate


Environmental permits and claim beaconing is complete, historical data has been comprehensively compiled into a GIS database, and reconnaissance visits have been carried out by ACR and REI.  Both commodities (Phosphate and REE) can have complex extractive metallurgy so initial sampling and research is focussing on the metallurgy and mineralogy of the deposit.


In June ACR announced that it had signed a joint venture heads of agreement with Australian-based private exploration company, Rare Earth International Ltd ('REI'), to explore the Project specifically for Rare Earth elements (REEs).  REEs reported from the carbonatite include Cerium, Lanthanum, Neodymium, Praseodymium and Gadolinium.


This project complements ACR's Chishanya Hill phosphate project in Zimbabwe, where considerable expertise has already been developed investigating the geology and metallurgy of a similar carbonatite intrusion.  ACR will be exploring the phosphate potential of Nkombwa Hill as a 100% owned project.


Zambia - Kasempa Cu-Au


The Kasempa project lies in central Zambia in Proterozoic sediments and granites at the root zone of the Zambian copperbelt. In recent years the potential for large Iron oxide copper-gold (IOCG) deposits have been recognised, similar to Olympic Dam in Australia.


Geoquest consultants, Zambia, have compiled all historical data on copper and gold exploration over the lease area into a GIS database, and have identified several copper-gold targets where soil geochemistry coincides with magnetic highs possibly linked to mineralised intrusive granites.


Claims beaconing and environmental permitting is underway, prior to field visits and planning of geophysics/drilling.


This announcement has been reviewed by Mike Kellow BSc, a member of the Australian Institute of Geologists and Technical Director of ACR.  Mr Kellow meets the definition of a "qualified person" as defined in the AIM Note for Mining, Oil and Gas Companies.


Neither the contents of the Company's website nor the contents of any website accessible from hyperlinks on the Company's website (or any other website) is incorporated into, or forms part of, this announcement.






Term/ Acronym                    Explanation    

aeromagneticsmagnetic survey carried out with a sensor in an aircraft;

archaeanrocks greater than 2,600 Ma in age;

argillaceousa sedimentary rock dominated by clay and silt-sized particles;

Auchemical symbol for gold;

carbonatiteintrusive or extrusive igneous rocks defined by mineralogic composition consisting of greater than 50 percent carbonate minerals, generally calcium carbonate. They usually occur as pipelike intrusions;

concentratenormally of metallic minerals such as pyrite and arsenopyrite after removal of gangue;

Cuchemical symbol for copper;

DDHdiamond drill hole

diamond drillingdrilling method using a diamond-impregnated cutting bit to obtain a core sample of rock;

dolomites / dolomiticdolomite is the name of a  sedimentary carbonate rock  and  a  mineral,  both composed of calcium magnesium carbonate CaMg(CO3)2;

electromagnetic surveygeophysical technique using electrical currents to  detect conductive  bodies below   surface.   Conductive   bodies include  massive-sulphides that may contain base metals;

EM survey              see electromagnetic survey;

faulta fracture or break  within a body  of rock across  which some  movement  has occurred;

felsic intrusivean   igneous rock    of    granitic composition  that  is intruded   into surrounding strata;

fold  geological term for a curve or bend of planar surfaces in rocks;

geophysicsmineral prospecting  systems  designed to  detect mineralisation  using  the physical properties of rocks;

igneous rockoriginally molten can  be volcanic  or intrusive;

IP survey              "Induced Potential"  -  a  geophysical technique   to   detect   disseminated sulphide mineralization;

JORCJoint Ore  Reserves Committee  of  the Australasian Institute  of Mining  and Metallurgy;

lodesa discrete, rich portion of an orebody that   has    a    distinct    spatial orientation, often controlled by faults and folds;

magnetic surveymeasurements of  the  perturbation  in the earth's magnetic  field caused  by magnetic minerals in rocks;

mineralisation  metallic minerals such as gold, base metals, pyrite and arsenopyrite incorporated in rocks;

mineralised zones hydrothermally   altered    structural features    containing     potentially valuable minerals;

orebody     economically  viable   portion  of   a mineralised zone;

phoscorite  calcium phosphate mineral occurring in carbonatite lavas;

pyroxenitean ultrabasic rock rich in pyroxene  - a silicate mineral;

quartzsilicon oxide mineral  very common  in hydrothermal deposits;

radiometrics  the  measurement  by  spectrometer  of radiation   energy   given   off    by radioactive   rock-forming   minerals, usually Uranium, Thorium, Potassium;

resourcemineral resource  as  defined  by  the JORC Code 2004;

reverse circulation (RC) drillingrotary percussion drilling whereby the RC sample is  returned from  the  cutting head inside the rod string to  surface thereby  avoiding  contamination from the walls of the hole;

rotary air blast (RAB) drilling       Open-hole   drilling   whereby   drill RAB cuttings are  returned to  surface  by compressed air  in an  un-lined  hole; contamination  is  possible  from  the walls of the hole;

schistmetamorphic rock  with well  developed foliation;

shear zone             zone of multiple fractures or discontinuities in rock, either ductile or brittle;

siltstonefine grained usually quartz rich sedimentary rock; where calcareous contains calcium or magnesium carbonate;

stockworkszone of multiple quartz filled fractures with individual veins often of random orientation;

strikethe horizontal orientation of a planar geological feature;

sulphide  sulphur bearing metallic mineral;

thrustshallow dipping fault where the upper body of rock overrides the lower portion;






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