• Blackstone adds a second geophysics crew and three additional drill rigs to double its exploration capacity at the Ta Khoa Nickel-Cu-PGE project in Vietnam;
  • The Company’s geophysics programs have been highly effective at identifying nickel sulfide targets – adding a second geophysics crew will expediate exploration by identifying additional targets for follow-up drilling;
  • Blackstone recently purchased a fourth diamond drill rig to accelerate drilling to supplement the ongoing study work focused on downstream processing to produce nickel sulfate for the lithium-ion battery industry;
  • Blackstone now has six diamond drill rigs operating, four of which are owned by the Company. Three rigs are drilling at Ban Chang, testing massive sulfide vein (MSV) targets and three are testing down dip extensions of the King Cobra Discovery Zone (KCZ) at Ban Phuc (refer to Figure 1);
  • Two contractor rigs at the KCZ can drill deeper targets with drilling capacity to 500m depth;
  • Blackstone’s four maiden drill holes at Ban Chang all intersected massive sulfide nickel over a 1.2km strike within a 1.2km long massive sulfide target zone defined by high priority electromagnetic (EM) plates;
  • Maiden resource estimate due this quarter; accelerated drilling aims to drill new targets and complete infill drilling to update resource;
  • Blackstone’s Scoping Study on downstream processing to produce nickel sulfate for the lithium ion battery industry also on track for release this quarter.

Blackstone Minerals Limited (ASX:BSX) is pleased to announce the acceleration of exploration at its Ta Khoa Nickel-Cu-PGE project in Vietnam by adding a second geophysics crew and three additional drill rigs to its fleet. This will allow Blackstone to double the exploration capacity.

The addition of a fourth Blackstone owned diamond rig will afford the Company the option to test multiple prospects simultaneously, accelerating future resource upgrades, following the completion of the Company’s maiden resource, scheduled for this quarter.

Successful deployment of Blackstone owned and operated drill rigs has provided the Company with substantial cost savings, with approximately 60% reduction of per metre drilling costs relative to Australian industry averages1.

1Industry average refers to quoted rates received in Australia for equivalent diamond drilling

Owning and operating four diamond drill rigs substantially increases the amount of drilling the Company
can undertake relative to other companies for the same expenditure.

Blackstone Minerals’ Managing Director Scott Williamson commented:

“Blackstone is pleased to announce that we have doubled our exploration capacity to allow us to accelerate our exploration program to rapidly unlock what’s shaping up to be a world class nickel sulfide district at Ta Khoa.

“We have expanded our exploration capacity by adding an additional geophysics crew and a further three
drill rigs. The additions will ensure we can progress the project as rapidly as possible in a cost-effective manner.

“We are looking forward to a steady stream of drilling results during Q3 and Q4 2020 and will keep our
shareholders up to date as results become available.”

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