VANCOUVER, British Columbia, Sept. 27, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Astra Exploration (TSXV:ASTR) (OTCQB:ATEPF) announced results of its Phase II drilling program at its Pampa Paciencia gold-silver project in Northern Chile, reporting an intersect of 9 metres averaging 4.5 grams per tonne gold equivalent. The flagship 3,840 hectare, road-accessible, low sulphidation epithermal gold-silver project is located within an active mining district less than 15 kilometers from two major mines, Sierra Gorda and Spence, and 5 kilometers from the Faride mine, in the Antofagasta Region in northern Chile.
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Astra has completed property wide mapping and sampling, geophysical surveys, and localized trenching and in doing so, has defined a vein boulder field over approximately 75% of the project area. The veins do not outcrop as the majority of the project area is covered by a thin layer of gravels and caliche but the vein float can be used to identify areas of high prospectivity.
The Phase II program, consisting of 3,976 metres of RC drilling in 15 holes, all placed in the North Zone target area, focused on testing the Paciencia Vein system continuity and some magnetic targets. Drill results from the Paciencia vein system are thought to be analogous with the Faride LSE mine, located eight kilometres south of the Paciencia vein system, and in proximity with the Cerro Dominador regional fault.
Three mineralized shoots have been discovered to date. The Paciencia/Paciencia Este shoot is currently the largest, at approximately 400 metres along strike and approximately 170 metres vertical extension. The second shoot is defined in the Paciencia Oeste vein, with a defined 200 metres of strike, open to the east, and 130 metres vertical extension. A third shoot, discovered in this Phase II program, remains open in all directions with mineralization starting at a depth of 200 metres below surface.
Similarities between Faride and Pampa Paciencia based on results from this program confirm that the Paciencia vein system has the potential for multiple shoots of high-grade mineralization in a similar structural setting to Faride. Historical reserves of 234,000 gold ounces at Faride were cited following re-mapping of the project by Coeur in the 1990s.
Anomalous mineralization was intersected in the Tormenta vein, a splay of the Paciencia vein system to the west, with at least 300 metres of strike length, with 11 metres at 0.22 g/t AuEq at the intersection with Paciencia Oeste vein. These newly discovered veins are thick structures, with an estimated true thickness of 20 metres in PPRC-22-46 and 5 metres in PPRC-22-55, with potential to host additional mineralized shoots.
To date, Astra's drilling has focused on a small area of the project, demonstrating that linear magnetic low features, particularly those oriented NW-SE to E-W have a high correlation with concealed vein structures. Results from the Phase II program are shown in the video.
Highlights include the discovery of a third shoot of mineralization at depth in the Paciencia Oeste vein segment with 9 metres averaging 4.5 g/t AuEq, including a high-grade zone with a 3-metre interval of 12.7 g/t AuEq.
The shares, which began trading on the TSX Venture Exchange on January 26th, are currently trading at $0.165.
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