Hudbay Minerals Inc. announced the intersection of high-grade copper sulphide and oxide mineralization at shallow depth on its patented mining claims located within 7 kilometers (km) of its Rosemont copper project in Arizona. The drill program was initiated in 2020 to confirm historical drilling in this past-producing copper region formerly known as Helvetia. After receiving encouraging initial results, the company launched a larger drill program in early 2021 and has since doubled the number of drill rigs at site to six to further test the four known deposits at Copper World and the potential for additional mineralization.
“This new discovery on our private land in Arizona demonstrates our team’s strong expertise in exploration,” Hudbay President and CEO Peter Kukielski said. “They saw an opportunity to consolidate mineralization in the region and we are excited to continue to explore Copper World while remaining committed to advancing Rosemont through the appeals process.”
The Copper World deposits are located adjacent to the Rosemont deposit. To date, four deposits have been identified with a combined strike length of more than 5 km with opportunities to discover additional mineralization between the deposits. The mineralization occurs at shallower depths than at Rosemont.
The Copper World region has a rich history of mining from 1874 to 1969, during which time more than 20 small underground mines produced a total of approximately 440,000 tons at an average copper grade of 4.42%. This is the first time the region has been explored as a zone of continuous mineralization.
Hudbay’s 2020 exploration work began by compiling and validating all historical data on its private land claims and refining the geological model. In September 2020, the company initiated a 15,000-ft drill program, which was quickly expanded to a 40,000-ft drill program after early encouraging intersections of mineralization.
Hudbay has recently received the assay results from the 2020 drill program and the results have exceeded Hudbay’s expectations. The program confirmed the discovery of four new deposits based on significant volumes of high-grade copper sulphide and oxide mineralization starting, in most cases, near surface or at shallow depth.
Given the positive results from last year’s drill program, Hudbay initiated a second phase of exploration drilling in 2021 with a 70,000 ft follow-up drill program and has doubled the number of drill rigs operating at site to six.
Geophysical surveys are under way to assist in generating further targets. Hudbay has a current exploration budget of $10 million for its Arizona properties in 2021, which is likely to increase with further exploration success. Hudbay will review the results from its 2021 exploration program to determine the next steps for its Copper World properties and the potential synergies with Rosemont.