Metals exploration and development company Power Metal Resources updated the market on the Ditau project on Friday, which is exploring for rare earth elements in Botswana.
The AIM-traded firm holds Ditau in a 50-50 joint venture with Kavango Resources, which operates the project.
It said geophysical and geochemical surveys had been completed on seven of the 12 target areas consisting of geophysical ring structures, with data processing and interpretation carried out by Kavango’s technical team.
Three specific targets had now been prioritised for drilling, with each target including a possible carbonatite-intrusive body lying within an interpreted 300 metre depth from surface.
The targets would be tested using the “cost-effective” reverse circulation (RC) drilling method in the first instance.
It said target I1 is a large, intense magnetic dipole geophysics anomaly that spans 17 by eight kilometres, with a shallow target depth interpreted to be less than 100 metres.
Kavango believed I1 sat under just 70 metres of Kalahari sand cover, lying at the interpreted intersection of two major regional fault zones, with anomalous niobium values identified in soil sample results.
Target I4, meanwhile, spans 7.5 by five kilometres, with a shallow depth-to-source interpreted as less than 100 metres, and target I10 spans 2.5 by 2.8 kilometres, where geophysics showed high AMT resistivity, coincidental with a gravity high.
Data processing and interpretation was in progress for the final drill hole orientation, Power Metal said, with geophysical and geochemical surveys to continue on the remaining five target areas.
An environmental management plan for drilling was also in place.
“It is extremely positive to be able to confirm high priority drill targets at Ditau in Botswana, particularly as the strategic objective is the discovery of rare earth elements at a time when the world is seeking secure and safe supply sources,” said chief executive officer Paul Johnson.
“If successful, and we are able to identify carbonatite-hosted deposits of rare earths through the planned upcoming drill programme, we believe that Ditau will become an extremely valuable project.
“As joint venture project operator, Kavango is powering ahead with the various exploration work streams and we are extremely excited with these developments at Ditau, which also coincide with highly significant developments at the joint venture South Ghanzi project in the Kalahari Copper Belt, which is targeting large scale copper-silver discoveries.”
At 1435 BST, shares in Power Metal Resources were down 2.13% at 2.3p.