Hot Chili’s satellite drilling to spice up Costa Fuego development

STOCKHEAD | Sep 08, 2022

Pic: Via Getty Images

Hot Chili is all but certain to be upgrading resources at its Costa Fuego copper development after reporting new copper-silver intersections at the high-grade San Antonio deposit.

Resource upgrade drilling results such as 21m grading 1.6% copper equivalent (CuEq) from 74m down-hole, 13m at 1.3% CuEq from 133m and 7m at 1.6% CuEq from 11m are likely to see most if not all of the current Inferred resource of 4.2Mt grading 1.2% CuEq upgraded to the higher confidence Indicated category.

This will also allow Hot Chili (ASX:HCH) to include San Antonio – one of the satellite deposits at the Costa Fuego copper hub in Chile – in its mine plan.

Final drill results are also pending from the Valentina satellite deposit, which has proven to be an even spicier meal with initial assays returning results such as 3m at 12.1% CuEq.

A regulatory application for follow-up drilling at Valentina is being prepared while drilling is currently underway at the Santiago Z porphyry exploration target where five holes have been completed.

San Antonio drilling

The company completed 13 reverse circulation drill holes across the San Antonio resource window to test extensional potential as well as infill areas of lower geological confidence.

Several of these holes returned higher grades than estimated in the current resource estimate while a further three diamond holes were drilled for metallurgical test work purposes.

San Antonio’s shallow, high-grade nature makes it amenable for open pit mining with relatively low strip ratios.

Along with Valentina, it is expected to provide high grade, front-end ore which could have a positive material impact on the payback period and overall economics for the broader Costa Fuego development.

Costa Fuego boasts more than 3Mt of copper metal across the major Productora and Cortedera deposits, with measured indicated resources of 725Mt grading 0.47% CuEq, containing 2.75Mt Cu, 2.56Moz Au, 10.49Moz Ag, and 67.4kt Mo and an inferred resource of 202Mt grading 0.36% CuEq containing 731kt Cu, 605koz Au, 2.03Moz Ag and 13.4kt Mo.