Exploration today is a knowledge-based industry that relies on advanced technologies such as satellite imagery and geophysical and geochemical survey, and on geological studies ranging from plate tectonics to chemical composition of rocks and minerals. Teamwork and co-operation between geological disciplines is necessary for successful mineral exploration.
At CNMC, we have built a sound geology team and network of expert independent consultants to manage our mineral exploration programme professionally, efficiently and to internationally accepted standards. All exploration programmes undertaken by CNMC follow a strict statutory requirement to ensure compliant geological modelling and mineral resource estimation.
To start off the exploration process, CNMC geologists use geology maps to look for potential sites and locations. Once the prospective areas have been marked out, our geologists will compare the physical and chemical characteristics of the rocks found at the different areas to further identify areas with greater potential. Once these areas are identified and established, remote sensing, ground geophysics and geo chemistry are used to outline targets for drill testing.
Drilling at these sites involves extracting rock samples from various locations. These samples are analysed to determine if any gold exists, the potential size of the deposit, and the quality of the gold. Assays are conducted on sawn half core sections, with other half retained for future reference. The saw blade is cleaned between samples during logging and sampling of the drill core. Gold samples are prepared and assayed by third party independent laboratories, using fire assay (30 gram charge). Silver, Copper, Lead, and Zinc are assayed with a four acid digestion followed by atomic absorption spectroscopy. Our primary laboratory is an ISO-9001:2000 certified laboratory. Standard, blank and duplicate samples are used throughout the sample sequence as checks for the exploratory diamond drilling. Secondary laboratories are also used for verifying assay results.
Ore samples are then taken and examined for the metallurgical quality of the gold in order to determine the appropriate process technique required to extract the gold.