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Sipa gears up for new field season in the Paterson as nickel drilling continues in Uganda

Field preparations for airborne EM at Paterson North Project have commenced. Diamond drilling underway in Uganda


Paterson North, WA (Copper-Gold)

Field preparations have commenced for a major SkyTEM airborne EM scheduled in May.

1,150 line kilometres will be flown testing key magnetic features and structures under cover.

Airborne EM was a key factor in the identification of the anomaly that Rio Tinto first drilled in late 2017 that led to the Winu copper discovery, 10km to the west of Sipa’s land-holdings.

Follow-up ionic leach surface sampling is set to commence to further define the copper/polymetallic anomaly adjacent to Obelisk in preparation for drill testing.

Other activities for the 2019 field season include 3D pole-dipole IP geophysics at Obelisk and WA Government EIS co-funded drill testing of geochemical and geophysical targets..

Uganda, East Africa (Nickel-Copper)

Diamond drilling continues at Akelikongo and regional targets under the US$59M JV with Rio Tinto (Sipa as manager). Assay results are awaited. Regional mapping and rock sampling is progressing.

Project Generation

New projects secured in NW Queensland (gold) and Northern WA (copper, zinc) consistent with Sipa’s strategy of generating high-potential base metal and gold projects in underexplored terrains in Australia.


Sipa’s major shareholder, Rodiv (NSW) Pty Limited (Rodiv), a company controlled by prominent Sydney businessman Mr Ervin Vidor AM, increased its holding to >10% following a $450k placement.

Proceeds of the placement to be used to support Sipa’s aggressive copper exploration campaign in the Paterson Province of WA Pilbara and for project generation purposes.

Figure 1. Location of Paterson North Project showing planned SkyTEM airborne survey.

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Paterson North Copper-Gold Project, Western Australia

Since completing its 2018 field season, a number of developments have contributed to a significantly improved understanding of the geological significance and context of Sipa’s Obelisk discovery and its surrounding tenement package.

Most notable has been the recent confirmation of a significant copper-gold-silver discovery by Rio Tinto at Winu, located approximately 10km west of Sipa’s tenement holding in February.

Important information that has come from Rio’s announcement that can be applied to Sipa’s exploration activities include:

A similar polymetallic copper, gold, silver, molybdenum, bismuth and tungsten signature at both Winu and Obelisk. Peak assay values from Sipa’s drilling are 22g/t Au, 2% Cu, 16g/t Ag, 323ppm Mo, 0.3% Bi and 0.3% W (see ASX Releases, 19 June 2017 and 12 Oct 2017);

The mineralisation discovered at both Winu and Obelisk is associated with quartz sulphide veins with dominant sulphides, chalcopyrite, pyrite and pyrrhotite. High-grade veins of up to 22g/t Au and 2% Cu have been found at Obelisk; and

Vein-hosted mineralisation with multiple mineralising events has been identified at both locations associated with biotite alteration of metasiltstones and, in the case of Obelisk, also with dolerite.

Airborne EM was a key factor in the identification of the anomaly that Rio first drilled in late 2017, resulting in the Winu discovery.

Airborne EM, Pole-Dipole IP and New Geochemical Program

Sipa has now contracted Skytem to conduct an airborne EM survey in May 2019 following the completion of further EM surveying for Rio Tinto. Field logistics to support the survey have commenced.

In addition, further pole-dipole IP geophysical lines will be surveyed following one line completed in 2018 which successfully detected and provided 2D depth information on an earlier gradient-array IP survey. The extra lines will resolve the anomalism in three dimensions in preparation for drill testing.

Concurrently with the Airborne EM a follow-up ionic leach surface soil program will be undertaken to better define the surface copper and polymetallic anomaly immediately south of Obelisk, which was extended with the results from drill holes PNA090 and 091 (see Figure 2).

Ionic leach assaying is a relatively new and very sensitive assaying technique which is able to detect very low elemental responses in soils.

The technique is being widely trialed in the exploration industry with reported success in detecting anomalous metallic element signals through transported cover.

Following an initial orientation low-level ionic leach sampling line over Obelisk, a further three programs totalling around 200 samples have been collected and assayed from the Obelisk and Andromeda prospects.

Results show anomalism in a number of elements, including copper, which appear to be correlated with drilled bedrock mineralisation at both Obelisk and Andromeda, around 20km north-west of Obelisk.

At Obelisk, a north-west trending copper zone adjacent to the south-west of the drilled copper anomaly is present. Other anomalous elements which are coincident with the anomaly are As, Ba, Ce, Li, Nd, Pb, Se, Sm, Th U and Zn.

Importantly, the soil copper anomaly is largely untested by drilling and, where partially tested by recent aircore drilling, corresponded to bedrock copper mineralisation in drill holes PNA090 and PNA091 (refer to ASX announcement of 14 September 2018). This is a priority drilling target for the 2019 field season.


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Figure 2 : Surface ionic leach copper results from Obelisk, open to the north, south and west,

located south-west of highly anomalous >1,000ppm copper anomaly in bedrock from aircore drilling.

EIS Drilling

Drilling testing of copper targets at south Obelisk, Aranea and first pass drill testing of anomalies defined by the airborne EM survey is planned once EM data have been collected and processed.

The drilling at both south Obelisk and Aranea will be supported by a WA Government co-funded EIS drilling grant for up to $150,000, as announced late last year.

This is a competitive program and, importantly, Sipa was awarded the only such grant for this round for any projects in the Paterson Province. The grants have been an important part of Sipa’s exploration strategy as the area was, up until a few years ago, almost unexplored with drilling.

An important part of the Company’s reconnaissance exploration approach is to understand fundamental geology, mineralising processes and prospectivity.

The North Paterson Province is now one of the most active and prospective new exploration frontiers in Australia, with exploration programs underway by major mining companies such as Rio Tinto, FMG, and Newcrest, as well as a number of junior exploration companies including Sipa, Antipa Minerals and Encounter Resources (under agreement with IGO).

This high level of activity, combined with Rio Tinto’s Winu copper and gold discovery 10km west of Sipa’s tenements, highlight its world-class discovery potential.


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Kitgum Pader Nickel-Copper Project, Uganda

The nickel-copper exploration program funded by Rio Tinto is continuing at the Kitgum Pader Base Metal Project in Uganda. The program is being managed by Sipa on behalf of its joint venture partner, Rio Tinto, which is currently earning a 51% interest in the project.

Figure 3: Kitgum-Pader tenement outlined with prospects.

The program included the following activities for the quarter:

Regional mapping and rock chip sampling: A program of regional mapping and rock chip sampling commenced in mid-January and was ongoing at the end of the quarter. The mapping was focused on areas of gravity surveys where nickel anomalism from soils and previous rock chip sampling indicated possible Akelikongo suite ultramafic intrusions. The mapping and sampling is designed to further understand the setting and geochemistry of these outcrops to determine magma fertility for magmatic nickel and copper sulphides

Areas of focus included the Goma, Lawiyadul, Katunguru, Awodi Padwat and Lugwa Jopudung prospects (Figure 3).

Soil sampling: Assessment of Sipa’s extensive >70,000 pXRF soils database indicates that a number of anomalies remain open. On the basis of this data, additional tenements have been acquired with soil sampling underway over these areas and other tenements were rationalised.

Diamond Drilling: Diamond drilling of a further two holes for 713.4m was completed during the quarter at Akelikongo.


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The drilling at Akelikongo has aimed to further investigate both the geometry of the down-plunge position of the mineralisation and the eastern margin of the intrusive complex.

Logging is ongoing with assay results for these two holes and the holes drilled in late 2018 expected in the coming weeks.

Bohemia Zinc-Lead Project, Lennard Shelf, Western Australia

During the quarter, Sipa secured a new highly prospective MVT-type zinc-lead exploration project in the Lennard Shelf Province of north western WA. The newly-acquired Bohemia tenement, located 40km south-east of the previously mined high-grade Cadjebut Zinc-Lead Mine, represents another strategic addition to the Company’s generative Australian exploration portfolio.

Compilation of historical data from previous drilling campaigns conducted by former owners indicates that the area is highly prospective for MVT-type zinc-lead with historical results of up to 6.8% in upper Devonian Mississippi Valley-Type mineralisation. The Bohemia Project complements the Barbwire Terrace Project, secured last year, which is also prospective for MVT-type zinc-lead-silver deposits. (Figure 4).

Figure 4: Previous Zn + Pb drilling results at Bohemia Project.

The Bohemia Project was previously explored by Cadjebut Mine holders BHP (1984-1994), Western Metals (1994-2003), and also Mincor (2010 to 2016).

Sipa believes that the project area has strong potential to host further high-grade mineralisation in structural positions such as ramp faults and antiformal flexures. Further along strike at the Cadjebut Mine, which is now privately held, high-grade mineralisation was discovered by Meridian Minerals. Results returned by Meridian Minerals from the New Kubra prospect in a linking structure between