Viking Mines has provided a quarterly update on the state-of-play of operations at its Berkh Uul coal project in Mongolia.
The company announced the successful completion of its first drilling programme at the coal project, which confirmed both the thickness and the quality of coal seams as indicated in historic drilling. The programme also extended the deposit 1.5 km to the south of previous drilling. Coal was intersected at shallow depths of less than 80 m in the 17 of 18 holes drilled.
Viking was pleased the drilling programme was completed, with results received before the onset of the winter field season recess.
The drilling program, designed to infill and extend the existing drill coverage, commenced in the northeast of the licence area where there is pre-existing drilling within the confines of the current 38 million t resource. The drilling progressed to the south, targeting extensions to the deposit to add to the current resource. A total of 1064.5 m were drilled in 18 holes.
The drilling tested the near surface (top 60 m) shallow west dipping eastern limb of a broad south plunging synclinal structure, in which two main coal seams (Seams 1 and 2) are located. Holes were drilled using PCD open hole precollars, with PQ size diamond core tails through the coal bearing zones, on a nominal 500 m line spacing.
Results show an ash content of <14%, moisture of <15%, sulfur of <0.7% and calorific value in the range of 6000 – 7000 kcal/kg on an air-dried basis.
These positive results indicate that the quality of the coal is comparable or better compared to the historical drilling data, notwithstanding differences in the analytical methods and techniques performed.
Of particular interest are holes BU-14-14 and 15, drilled 500 m south of the limit of previous drilling, which intersected 7 m and 9 m true thickness respectively of coal at a depth of less than 80 m. These are the thickest intersections of coal recorded thus far in drilling on the project.
As part of the requirement for a mining lease approval, a Baseline Environmental Survey for the Berkh
Uul area was completed by Ulaanbaatar based Sustainable Environmental Consulting LLC during the quarter. Engagement of specialist consultants to address other aspects of the mining lease approval process is currently being implemented.