The Fiedmont Platinum Palladium Project, Québec
The Project: The Fiedmont Project consists of 54 mining claims covering 23 sq km (Map 1) that Carube has an option to earn a one hundred percent interest by completing cash payments, share issuances and exploration expenditures over a 5 year time period. The claims are highway accessible and located 30 km north of Val d’Or, Quebec (Map 2).
Three large altered differentiated mafic-ultramafic, virtually unexplored, intrusions lie within the Project’s boundaries. Multiple platinum group elements (PGE) zones have been located within the partially explored northern intrusion: the best drill and channel PGE results to date being 5.7g/t over 1m and 2.3g/t over 4m.
Exploration in 2011 will consist of detailing soil sampling, stripping and detailed mapping to better focus a planned drilling program in an area of known PGE enrichment.
Soil Geochemistry, In the fall of 2011, as part of a Phase I exploration program, Carube completed a 1400 humus and B-horizon sampling program on a selected area of the northern intrusive. This intrusive has been the focus of the majority of the exploration work to date. Multi-element analysis after aqua regia digestion indicated some new anomalous areas. (Map 8) Mapping sampling, stripping, trenching and ground geophysics are planned.
Geology and Mineralization
Geological Setting: The Fiedmont Project is located within the central volcanic belt of the Abitibi Greenstone Belt. Archean age rocks in the region of Fiedmont Township are dominated by Kinojevis Group volcanic rocks. The Kinojevis volcanics are interbanded with rhyolite, trachyte and pyroclastic rocks both on the property and in the region. The property lies near (2.5 km) the eastern margins of the La Corne batholith, which accounts for the presence of molybdenite-bearing quartz pegmatites on the property.
A large mafic to ultramafic intrusive within the Kinojevis volcanic rocks complex has been mapped as Post Keewatin. The intrusive complex is comprised of quartz diorite, intrusive amphibolite, altered pyroxenite, gabbro and peridotite. Although estimated to be 1 kilometre in diameter by L.P. Tremblay in 1946, geological observations and interpretation of an aeromagnetic survey indicates that three mafic/ultramafic lobes are present that are probably interconnected at depth, giving the intrusive a much larger size (Map 3).
Two large granitic batholiths intrude the Kinojevis supracrustal rocks northwest of the property. The La Corne batholith is the larger of the two and is genetically related to deposits of lithium-bearing minerals and molybdenite. Showings of quartz veins containing molybdenite in the western part of the property are likely related to this intrusion.
Project Geology: The geology underlying the Fiedmont Project (the ″Project″), itself, is dominated by Kinojevis Group volcanic rocks, which consist mainly of basaltic and andesitic flows interbedded with rhyolite, trachyte and pyroclastic rocks.
Inferred geological contacts can be drawn to separate outcrops of clearly intrusive rocks from the Kinojevis Group volcanic rock (Map 4). The intrusions are bounded to the northeast, southeast and west by intermediate to mafic volcanic rocks, which include extensive exposures of intermediate agglomerate, tuff and lapilli tuff. Swampy areas to the western part of the Project have less outcrop exposure; however, an outcrop of an intermediate to mafic intrusive there indicates that at least one intrusive body west of the volcanic rocks exists along the western margin of the main intrusion. This is supported by aeromagnetic data and by previous humus geochemistry results.
Intrusive rocks appear to be enclosed by predominantly basaltic volcanic rocks. These volcanic rocks are characterized by fine grained massive flows in the northern part of the Project and by pyroclastic tuffs, lapilli tuffs and agglomerates in the southern part of the Project. Agglomerates are typically matrix supported with up to 40% rounded variably flattened fragments. Groundmass and fragments are generally fine grained but rarely medium to coarse grained. Fragments are occasionally heterolithic; mostly siliceous, but occasionally, intermediate to mafic in composition.
Within the large area of intrusive rocks, compositions range from intermediate to ultramafic. A large area of intermediate to ultramafic rocks within the intrusive rocks is present in the central and eastern portions of the Project. Brecciated gabbroic rocks, which are most common in the northern portions of the intrusion, are interpreted as magmatic breccias. Similar rocks also occur along the highway, which transverses the Project.
Altered ultramafic rocks occur in the central part of the property near the Highway Showing. Thin section examination of two samples indicates the presence of strongly altered peridotite or dunite. These altered ultramafic rocks are spatially related to a north-trending magnetic high. However there are also outcrops of altered ultramafic rocks spatially related to magnetic lows in the western part of the property. Intermediate to mafic intrusions with brecciated textures, interpreted as magmatic breccias, occur at a showing near the highway. Pegmatitic textures in the breccia zones also indicate a hydrothermal episode, approximately coeval with development of the brecciated textures.
Scattered outcrops of quartz/biotite rich rocks within the intrusives have been identified as highly altered siltstone and wacke and may represent xenoliths.
A series of quartz pegmatite dykes in the western part of the property contain significant quantities of molybdenite. The pegmatites are 0.4 to 1.0 m wide and are comprised of quartz with minor muscovite and feldspar hosted in intermediate to mafic intrusions. Molybdenum and lithium were extracted historically from pegmatites in the nearby (2.5 km) La Corne Batholith.
Mineralization: Characteristic of all the showings, the mineralization occurs as finely disseminated pyrrhotite-chalcopyrite-pyrite in silicified diorite/gabbro and variously hydrothermally altered mafic/ultramafic rocks. The intrusions are part of a differentiated intrusive complex, which appears to have been injected into a sequence of sulphide bearing volcanic and sedimentary rocks. Six significant PGE showings have been discovered since 2005. Large unexplored portions of the project area probably contain additional mineralization.
Robert Tremblay (2006: one of the prospectors whom discovered the original showings) states that “for the most part, PGE mineralization occurs in fine to coarse grained mafic to ultramafic intrusives of dioritic, gabbroic, peridotitic and/or pyroxenitic affinity. Host units are locally silicified and host weak concentrations of sulphides, generally less than 1-2%, but locally to 5-7%. Pyrite and chalcopyrite are the dominant sulphides, with the latter ranging from trace amounts to 1-2% locally; pyrrhotite is secondary”. These pegmatitic textures and silica – pyrite alteration are common to the host rocks at other intrusive hosted PGM deposits such as the Lac des Iles deposit, located northeast of Thunder Bay, Ontario, and East Bull mafic/ultramafic intrusion located west of Sudbury, Ontario.
On the Fiedmont Project, the presence of pegmatitic textures in the silicate minerals show a positive correlation with PGE values and implies a late stage aqueous/vapour mineralizing event related to magmatism, regardless of sulphide concentrations. The source of the liquids and vapours may well be related to intrusions being injected into a wet environment such as a sedimentary rock sequence or submarine volcanic sequences. According to Eckstrand’s classification scheme (2005) the type of mineralization on the Fiedmont Project is a “PGE Deposit” characterized by sparse magmatic sulphides where the PGE content has greater economic value than the Ni, Cu and Co content.
Field observations within the project show the presence of magmatic breccias, suggesting that the intrusive complex was emplaced energetically with disruptive magma pulses. The presence of sediments within highly strained mafic intrusions and a sulphide rich dacitic unit in proximity to, and along strike from, the cluster of five showings suggests that large scale assimilation of country rocks and the creation of xenoliths has occurred, resulting in hybridization of the ultramafic rocks to produce mafic and intermediate intrusive rocks.
Other Possibilities: Two molybdenite showings are known on the property. They are likely related to a pegmatite-hosted Mo, Li, Ta, Bi, Be and U bearing complex pegmatites similar to those in the La Corne batholith. A lithium mine, 15 km to the northwest, produced 15M t of 1.14% Li2O in the past and is under development by Quebec Lithium Corporation.
Prospecting: Platinum group elements (“PGEs”) were originally discovered in 2001 by two local geologists, R.J. Tremblay and T. Coyle, in blasted rubble from road construction, which lead to the discovery of the "Highway Showing". The Highway Showing and its extension were prospected with samples yielding PGE values of up to 4.0 g/t. Later another showing was discovered about 800m NNW of original showing (the “Tower Showing”); three other showings were then located within 300m of the Tower Showing. Three of the zones were sampled by the geologists and yielded results of 0.46g Pt/t and 1.44g Pd/t over 2m; 0.75g Pt/t and 1.52g Pd/t over 4m; 1.52g Pt/t and 4.21g Pd/t over 1m. PGE values at the original showing ranged up to 4g/t; and up to 6.7g, 4.5g. 1.1g. and 5.7g/t at the other four showings when sampled by Kinbauri Gold Corp (″KGC″) in 2006.
KGC concluded that the PGE mineralization occurs in dark, very hard, fine to medium grained silicified diorite to gabbro, commonly brecciated; containing 1% to 7% disseminated pyrrhotite and pyrite and subordinate chalcopyrite. Nickel is present in minor, but significant amounts (up to 0.2%). Rock geochemistry suggests the rocks are altered ultramafics. Showings, which have been prospected and drilled, are either non-magnetic or very weakly magnetic, but appear to be located adjacent to a magnetically defined horizon with a strike length of over 600m.
Initial Drilling: In 2006, four short diamond drill holes (60m each at 45°) were drilled under surface showings to confirm the strength and extent of the PGE mineralization. Two, and possibly three zones, were identified during this limited drilling campaign. Significant PGE intercepts (Pd + Pt + Au) were as follows:
Soil Geochemistry and Geophysics: A geochemical orientation soil survey was completed in 2006 to test this methodology for defining PGE mineralization. Results showed that anomalous patterns in Pt and Pd in both “B” horizon and humus samples closely coincided with known PGE occurrences and that the anomalies paralleled the strike of the PGE zone. In 2008, KGC conducted a geochemical humus survey covering a 2 square km area over the northern intrusive lobe. Although all elements determined by ICP-OES following aqua regia dissolution showed statistical valid results, the results for Au, Pd, Pt were clearly not valid as shown by statistics and the patterns of the plotted results. Nevertheless, the patterns shown by certain elements such as nickel as determined by ICP-OES are helpful in determining property geology and directing future work (Map 5 and Map 6).
A helicopter-borne magnetic survey with line spacing at 75m was completed in 2006 by Geophysics GPR International Inc; results were subsequently interpreted by Paterson, Grant and Watson Ltd. Three large altered, differentiated mafic-ultramafic intrusions into basalt and trachyte volcanics were delineated. It was noted that known PGE mineralization occurred near the northern contact of the northern body.
2009 Drill Program: In late 2009, a ″rushed″ drill program was completed by Pacific North West Capital (TSX:PFN) to test for PGE mineralization in areas outside of known mineralization (Map 7). It was based on geophysical and questionable geochemical anomalies, but little stripping or prospecting was completed to determine probable mineralization trends and only zones containing anomalous PGE values were encountered. However, the drill holes did intersect a variety of rock types, including magmatic mafic breccias, similar to those encountered in surface exposures. All evidence points to the differentiated complex being emplaced energetically with numerous disruptive magma pulses plus syngenetic and post genetic alteration and emplacement of PGEs. This situation looks similar to several of the PGE mineralized zones at the Lac des Iles deposit in NW Ontario, currently being mined by North American Palladium (PDL:TSX).
Further examination of the data indicate that the trend of the mineralization in one case was at right angles to those assumed by PFN; in another case an incorrect dip to the mineralization was assumed; and in yet another case, a questionable humus PGE anomaly was not intersected.
Proposed Exploration Program
Strategy: The Fiedmont Project is largely untouched in spite of the highly promising geologic environment and needs a thoughtful program to locate higher grade PGE mineralization, most immediately in the northern differentiated complex. Some drilling should be targeted under and closely along strike to the Tower Zone, which parallels the northern edge of the differentiated complex. Other holes should only be drilled following the trenching of areas where geophysics and soil geochemistry indicate favourable possibilities for PGE mineralization. Not only will the trenching give guidance to the drilling, but will allow examination and sampling of mineralized zones at surface.
The coincidence of known PGE showings and soil geochemical anomalies on the periphery of two large altered differentiated intrusions as defined by geophysics (magnetics) and mapping allows for rapid exploration and development of the project.
Action: In order to focus drilling on those areas most likely to contain economic PGE mineralization, there is a need to strip and trench the most prospective areas to define the general trend and extent of surface mineralization. In order to accomplish this in these areas Carube will be sampling (humus) on grids and analyzing these samples for PGEs (and other elements that are PGE indicators) at a laboratory well equipped to address the intricacies of determining PGEs in humus samples. Upon completion of the geochemical humus sampling program and subsequent trenching, a 2000m drill program is proposed to determine the nature and grade of the shallower PGE mineralization and the structural setting as part of the initial phase of exploration. Further drilling will be completed during a second phase to further extend the PGE mineralization, subsequent to a successful Phase 1.
A $550,000 budget has been proposed for Phase 1 and a $650,000 budget for Phase 2 by G.A. Harron & Associates Inc of Toronto, Ontario. G.A Harron authored a 43-101 compliant technical report on the Fiedmont Project.
Current Exploration Program
2011 Humus Sampling Program
The 2011 grid was re-cut over part of the 2008 grid. It exploited part of the 2008 base line and some of the 2008 north-south lines. The 2011 grid is smaller than the 2008 grid. It has an irregular outline and more closely spaced north-south lines (25 m), and it covers the key targets—the Pt-Pd showings, the anomalies in the 2007 aeromagnetic data, and the anomalies in the 2008 humus geochemical survey.
On-site supervision of the humus sampling work was completed by Robert J. Tremblay, P.Geo. (Quebec), through meetings with the contractor prior to commencing the work and field inspections. Géosciences Inc. of Rouyn Noranda, Quebec, was contracted by Carube to perform the 2011 humus sampling. Mr. Luc Marois, an experienced soil-sampler, headed the crew. In August 2011, they collected 1467 humus samples using soil augers (Figure 12). Samples were collected along north-south lines using a 25 m to 50 m sample interval. Samples were shipped to ALS Labs on September 15, 2011. At the ALS lab in Vancouver, samples were macerated and blended (ALS Code PRP-VEG01), decomposed in aqua regia, and analyzed by ICP-MS (ALS Code ME-VEG01).
In general, Pd concentrations are high in the NW and the SE and low in between. (These broad trends are observed in most of the elements analyzed) Within these broader zones, nine palladium anomalies are observed (Map 8). They vary in shape from round to linear and are hundreds of square meters in area. The ~60 ppb Pd contour defines their outline. Typical values range from 60 to 100 ppm Pd; with the various anomalies having maximum values of: 267 ppb (Anomaly Pd 1), 903 ppb (Anomaly Pd 2), 414 ppb (Anomaly Pd 3), 508 ppb (Anomaly Pd 4), 210 ppb (Anomaly Pd 5), 217 ppb (Anomaly Pd 6), 202 ppb (Anomaly Pd 7), 164 ppb (Anomaly Pd 8), and 352 ppb (Anomaly Pd 9).
The areas marking high Pd values within the NW sector have a linearity similar to that observed in the airborne magnetics (Map 3). This suggests the Pd anomalies are probably related to underlying intrusive layering or to subsequent alteration focusing along NW trending fault conduits. The areas marking high Pd values within the SE section are less linear in nature and probably relate more to differentiation or alteration within the mafic–ultramafic rocks mapped within this sector. The "Highway Zones" defined within the ENE sector of the grid are difficult to evaluate. Other Important elements including nickel (Ni), gold (Au) and molybdenum (Mo) are shown in Map 9, Map 10 and Map 11.