DRILLING DEFINES SECOND GOLD ZONE ALONG 1.4 KM VEIN STRUCTURE AT ASTRA'S PAMPA PACIENCIA PROJECT, CHILE

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Astra Exploration Limited Logo (CNW Group/Astra Exploration Limited)
Astra Exploration Limited Logo (CNW Group/Astra Exploration Limited)

VANCOUVER, BC, May 25, 2022 /CNW/ - Astra Exploration Inc. (TSXV: ASTR) ("Astra" or the "Company") is pleased to provide results from the remaining 18 of 30 completed drill holes at the Pampa Paciencia gold-silver project in northern Chile.

Highlights

  • New results expand mineralization at the Paciencia Vein to over 300 metres where it remains open at depth and along strike

  • Second zone at Paciencia Oeste Vein now defined over 200 metres where it remains open at depth and along strike

HOLE PPRC-22-36: 

  • 3.96 grams per tonne (g/t) gold and 37.67 g/t silver over three metres downhole (mDH) within a broader zone of 0.92 g/t gold and 8.61 g/t silver over 31 mDH at the Paciencia vein

HOLE PPRC-22-24:

  • 5.53 g/t gold and 47.1 g/t silver over one metre and 2.78 g/t gold and 75.6 g/t silver over two mDH within a broader zone of 0.72 g/t gold and 19.38 g/t silver over 25 mDH at Paciencia Oeste vein

HOLE PPRC-22-28:

  • 4.02 g/t gold and 26.9 g/t silver over two mDH within a broader zone of 1.45 g/t gold and 12.59 g/t silver over nine mDH at Paciencia Este vein

Astra's CEO, Brian Miller commented: "Astra's maiden drill program has accomplished two important goals at Pampa Paciencia. First, we have identified two high-grade shoots within the Paciencia Vein system, both of which remain open along strike and at depth. Second, we have made blind vein discoveries which demonstrates the effectiveness of the Company's geologic model and exploration methods. Early indications suggest that we could be in the upper levels of the gold mineralization with significant room to grow beneath these shallow intercepts. Astra will next complete a Phase 2 program to expand these open interstections and explore for new vein structures."

Figure 1: Longitudinal section of the Paciencia Vein System. Triangles are previous trenches and drill holes, circles are Phase I drill program. Values in gold equivalent. Blue boxes signify historical results. (CNW Group/Astra Exploration Limited)
Figure 1: Longitudinal section of the Paciencia Vein System. Triangles are previous trenches and drill holes, circles are Phase I drill program. Values in gold equivalent. Blue boxes signify historical results. (CNW Group/Astra Exploration Limited)
Figure 2: Schematic cross sections of the Paciencia Oeste (left) and Paciencia Este (right) veins. (CNW Group/Astra Exploration Limited)
Figure 2: Schematic cross sections of the Paciencia Oeste (left) and Paciencia Este (right) veins. (CNW Group/Astra Exploration Limited)

Drill Results Discussion

Pampa Paciencia is a 3,840 hectare road-access low-sulphidation epithermal (LSE) gold-silver project located within an active mining district less than 15 kilometers from two major mines (Sierra Gorda and Spence) and five kilometers from the Faride LSE mine (Figure 5).

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.

Most drilling focused on the 1.4 km long Paciencia Vein system located in the North Zone, which is comprised of Paciencia Oeste, Paciencia, and Paciencia Este vein segments (Figures 3 & 4). The Company previously reported results for 11 of 29 drill holes (May 2nd news release) which were from the Paciencia Vein, and the holes reported herein are for the remaining 18 drill holes as follows:

  • Paciencia Vein – 1 hole

  • Paciencia Oeste – 9 holes

  • Paciencia Este – 3 holes

  • Geophysical Targets – 2 holes

  • 15 Vein/Central Zone – 3 holes

Figure 3: Black dots & traces are historical DDH holes, and blue dots & traces are Phase I 2022 Astra Exploration RC holes. (CNW Group/Astra Exploration Limited)
Figure 3: Black dots & traces are historical DDH holes, and blue dots & traces are Phase I 2022 Astra Exploration RC holes. (CNW Group/Astra Exploration Limited)

Two mineralized shoots are being defined at Paciencia and Paciencia Oeste, where quartz texturing and geochemistry indicates that these two shoots could be higher elevations of the mineralized precious metals horizon. Both shoots are open along strike and at depth. Hole PPRC-22-36 from the Paciencia Vein further extended one mineralized shoot to the east while a second shoot is being defined by shallow drilling at Paciencia Oeste (Figures 1 & 4).

Drill holes at Pacienca Oeste and Paceincia Este intercepted thick (10 - 20 metres true thickness) vein structures which occurred in shallow drill holes approximately 15 to 25 metres below surface, with one hole reaching 75 metres below surface in Paciencia Oeste. Detail interpretation shows one to two parallel branches in both veins, with higher grades located in the more vertical portion of the Paciencia Oeste vein, as was also detected in Paciencia vein segment (Figure 2 and 3D Movie).

Figure 4: Magnetics map with location of RC drill holes (white dots and traces) at the Paciencia Vein System and the two geophysical targets. Dashed thick lines represent projected veins (purple = mineralized shoots) discovered at depth with Phase I drill program. Ag:Au calculated ratio is detailed for every vein segment. (CNW Group/Astra Exploration Limited)
Figure 4: Magnetics map with location of RC drill holes (white dots and traces) at the Paciencia Vein System and the two geophysical targets. Dashed thick lines represent projected veins (purple = mineralized shoots) discovered at depth with Phase I drill program. Ag:Au calculated ratio is detailed for every vein segment. (CNW Group/Astra Exploration Limited)

The three vein segments along the Paciencia Vein System are separated by ENE-striking faults that were interpreted with geophysical magnetics and confirmed with trenching. Plan map (Figure 4) and an integrated longitudinal section (Figure 1) clearly show this continuous but segmented nature of the Paciencia Vein System, and the presence of two high grade mineralized shoots with similar behaviour (45° SE plunge) which are both open along strike and at depth.

Geochemical results (Table 1) show the variation in the  of Ag:Au ratios in the Paciencia Vein System, with an average Ag to Au ratio of 47 in the higher grade portions of the Paciencia Oeste vein, that decrease to 16 in Paciencia vein, and to 4 in Paciencia Este vein. Preliminary results for the two blind geophysical vein discoveries returned Ag:Au ratios of 61 and 2 in Geophysical targets 2 and 1, respectively (Figure 4). Company geologists believe this further demonstrates the potential for finding Au-rich veining in the eastern portion of this vein network and/or at depth.

Drilling at Geophysical targets 1 and 2 resulted in the discovery of two blind veins (Figures 3 & 4). Geophysical target 1 intercepted two parallel structures composed of a 1 meter Mn-rich quartz vein and 3 meters limonitic breccia with anomalous precious metals (2m @ 0.28 g/t Au equivalent). Geophysical target 2 intercepted a shallow 14 meters thick structure composed by a chalcedonic quartz vein and limonitic breccias reporting similar anomalous results  (5m @ 0.14 g/t Au equivalent). Additional drilling will be required to find the hidden mineralized shoots that may be associated with these new vein discoveries.

The remaining three holes in the Central Zone confirmed thin (up to 2m thick) chalcedonic vein and veinlet structures hosted in the Paleocene andesites which overlay the Cretaceous granitoids. Drill holes did not reach sufficient depth to intersect the more competent granitoid rock where thicker veins develop as indicated by field mapping. These results indicate a shallow system elevation and deeper drilling is required to properly test the Central Zone targets.

Exploration Program Discussion

2,981 metres of RC drilling were completed in thirty holes between February and March 2022 at Pampa Paciencia. These mostly concentrated on defining the strike and depth continuity of the Paciencia Vein System in the North Zone with three holes were drilled to test veins at depth in the Central Zone and two holes tested geophysical targets in the North Zone (Figure 1). A total of 1,233 samples, including blanks, duplicates and standards, were sampled and sent to ALS lab in Santiago, Chile.

The drill program was completed for ~C$650,000 of all-in costs highlighting the ability to complete cost-effective exploration at low elevations in Chile.

Eleven historical holes had been drilled previously on the property and Astra's geologists continued with the numbering system, so holes PPRC-22-12 to PPRC-22-41 are the thirty holes completed by Astra Exploration.

Drill Hole

From
(m)

To
(m)

Length (m)

Aueq_80 (ppm)

Au (ppm)

Ag (ppm)

PPRC-22-23 - Paciencia Oeste

16

38

22

0.76

0.57

15.32

including

20

37

17

0.91

0.69

17.23

and including

20

24

4

1.31

0.88

34.62

and including

29

33

4

1.08

0.93

11.82

PPRC-22-24 - Paciencia Oeste

10

35

25

0.96

0.72

19.38

including 1

14

23

9

1.69

1.21

38.62

and including

15

20

5

2.36

1.66

56.14

and including

15

17

2

3.73

2.78

75.60

including 2

33

34

1

6.12

5.53

47.10

PPRC-22-25 - Paciencia Oeste

10

26

16

0.50

0.33

13.71

including

10

17

7

0.94

0.67

21.76

and including 1

11

14

3

0.91

0.75

12.00

and including 2

16

17

1

2.33

1.12

96.00

PPRC-22-26 - Paciencia Oeste

12

17

5

0.17

0.12

4.50

PPRC-22-28 - Paciencia Este

26

36

10

0.46

0.41

3.81

including

31

32

1

2.08

1.92

13.10


56

65

9

1.61

1.45

12.59

including

56

61

5

2.69

2.44

19.72

and including

59

61

2

4.36

4.02

26.90

PPRC 22-29 - Paciencia Este

48

52

4

0.20

0.15

3.60

PPRC-22-30 - Paciencia Este

46

58

12

0.54

0.51

2.65

including 1

46

49

3

0.90

0.86

2.93

and including

46

47

1

1.68

1.65

2.10

including 2

53

55

2

0.99

0.94

3.65

and including

54

55

1

1.37

1.33

3.20

PPRC-22-31 - Paciencia Oeste

29

42

13

1.41

1.13

22.34

including

32

40

8

2.19

1.80

31.50

and including

36

37

1

3.96

3.43

42.20

PPRC-22-32 - Paciencia Oeste

14

27

13

0.34

0.19

12.09

including

19

22

3

0.75

0.27

38.00

PPRC-22-33 - Paciencia Oeste

21

34

13

0.41

0.29

9.51

including

27

32

5

0.80

0.59

17.04

and including

30

32

2

1.01

0.76

19.30

PPRC-22-34 - Paciencia Oeste

22

24

2

0.18

0.10

6.20

PPRC-22-35 - Paciencia Oeste

61

88

27

0.51

0.24

21.86

including 1

61

62

1

1.95

1.19

60.30

including 2

76

82

6

1.24

0.54

55.67

and including

78

80

2

1.82

0.83

78.65

PPRC-22-36 - Paciencia

55

86

31

1.03

0.92

8.61

including

57

67

10

2.14

1.94

16.35

and including 1

57

60

3

4.42

3.96

37.67

and including 2

74

75

1

4.62

4.42

15.70

PPRC-22-37 - Geophysical target 1

81

83

2

0.28

0.27

0.65

PPRC-22-38 - Geophysical target 2

18

23

5

0.14

0.08

4.88

PPRC-22-39 - 15 Vein

No significant results




PPRC-22-40 - 15 Vein

56

57

1

0.32

0.20

9.60

PPRC-22-41 - 15 Vein

52

53

1

0.15

0.09

5.20


Table 1: Summary of the gold and silver geochemical results from Phase I drilling program. 

Figure 5: Location of the Pampa Paciencia flagship project in the Paleocene Belt. (CNW Group/Astra Exploration Limited)
Figure 5: Location of the Pampa Paciencia flagship project in the Paleocene Belt. (CNW Group/Astra Exploration Limited)

Sampling Procedures

Drill samples were sampled, bagged, and tagged by Astra´s geologists and then delivered to the ALS sample preparation laboratory in Santiago. Samples were prepared with PREP 31B code, and then analyzed with fire assay for gold (Au-AA24), acid digestion for silver (Ag-AA62), and multi elements by ICP (ME-ICP61). Gold overlimits were analysed by gravity method (Au-GRA22).

Qualified Person Statement

The technical data and information as disclosed in this report has been reviewed and approved by Darcy Marud.  Mr. Marud is a Practicing Member of the Association of Professional Geoscientists of Ontario and is a qualified person as defined under the terms of National Instrument 43-101 – Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects.

About the Company

Astra Exploration Inc. is an exploration company based out of Vancouver, BC. Astra is engaged in the acquisition, exploration and development of epithermal gold-silver properties in Chile and is building a portfolio of high-quality projects. Astra's current focus is the development of the Pampa Paciencia Project. Additional information is available on the Compnay's website at www.astra-exploration.com

Neither the TSXV nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSXV) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

Mineralization hosted on adjacent and/or nearby and/or geologically similar properties is not necessarily indicative of mineralization hosted on the Company's properties.

This news release may contain certain "Forward-Looking Statements" within the meaning of the United States Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 and applicable Canadian securities laws.  When or if used in this news release, the words "anticipate", "believe", "estimate", "expect", "target, "plan", "forecast", "may", "schedule" and similar words or expressions identify forward-looking statements or information.  These forward-looking statements or information may relate to the Company's business activities; exploration on the Company's properties; and marketing initiatives.  Such statements represent the Company's current views with respect to future events and are necessarily based upon a number of assumptions and estimates that, while considered reasonable by the Company, are inherently subject to significant business, economic, competitive, political and social risks, contingencies and uncertainties.  Many factors, both known and unknown, could cause results, performance or achievements to be materially different from the results, performance or achievements that are or may be expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Such factors include, without limitation: development of the industry in which the Company operates; risks associated with the conduct of the Company's business activities; risks relating to reliance on the Company's management team and outside contractors; currency fluctuations; risks regarding the failure to generate sufficient cash flow from operations; laws and regulations governing the industry in which the Company operates; the ability of the communities in which the Company operates to manage and cope with the implications of COVID-19; the economic and financial implications of COVID-19 to the Company; operating or technical difficulties; employee relations, labour unrest or unavailability; stock market volatility; conflicts of interest among certain directors and officers; lack of liquidity for shareholders of the Company; litigation risk; and other risk factors disclosed in the Company's public disclosure documents available on the Company's profile at www.sedar.com. Readers are cautioned against attributing undue certainty to forward-looking statements or forward-looking information. Although the Company has attempted to identify important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially, there may be other factors that cause results not to be anticipated, estimated or intended. The Company does not intend, and does not assume any obligation, to update these forward-looking statements or information to reflect changes in assumptions or changes in circumstances or any other events affecting such statements and information other than as required by applicable laws, rules and regulations.

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