Mining Explorers 2017: Peregrine Diamonds Ltd.
Peregrine Diamonds Ltd. continues to focus on the exploration and potential development of its Chidliak diamond project located roughly 120 kilometers (75 miles) north of Iqaluit, the capital of Nunavut. The company has identified 71 kimberlites on the 413,000-hectare (1 million acres) Chidliak property, eight of which are considered to be potentially economic. A 2016 preliminary economic assessment for developing two of these kimberlite pipes, CH-6 and CH-7, envisions an open-pit diamond mine with a life of roughly 10 years. Production would start at the CH-6, a kimberlite with 4.64 million metric tons of inferred resource averaging 2.45 carats per metric ton (11.39 million carats) diamond to a depth of 260 meters, followed by CH-7, a kimberlite with 5.99 million metric tons of inferred resource averaging 0.85 c/t (4.23 million carats) diamonds to a depth of 240 meters. The mine is projected to produce an average of 1.2 million carats of diamonds per year from kimberlite averaging 1.67 c/t. Both kimberlites remain open at depth and an internal study indicates the potential to substantially enhance the economics of Chidliak by incorporating an underground mining operation below 260 meters at CH-6. Three holes completed during an initial phase of 2017 drilling confirm this potential. DD36, a 378-meter vertical hole, cut kimberlite from 4.5 to 295.8 meters below surface; DD38 cut 190.2 meters of olivine-rich CH-6 kimberlite from 277 to 442 meters; and DD39 ended in kimberlite at 532 meters below surface, confirming the kimberlite extends beyond 500 meters. Beyond confirming underground minable kimberlite from 260 to 500 meters below surface, the primary objective of the program, Peregrine said the drilling shows the width of the kimberlite is expanding at depth. “This additional kimberlite material could provide a significant uplift to contained carats as we look to recalculate the resource later this year, said Peregrine President and CEO Tom Peregoodoff. In August, Peregrine raised C$10.3 million, which is largely being applied toward a continuation of the 2017 drill program at Chidliak.
Peregine’s portfolio also includes Nanuq and Nanuq North, diamond projects north of Rankin Inlet, Nunavut; and Lac de Gras; a 8,943-hectare project about 27 kilometers (17 miles) from the Diavik Mine in Northwest Territories. The company also holds prospecting licenses that cover six separate diamond project areas in Botswana.