Clean Air, Benton drill 31 m of 25 g/t PtEq in Ontario

Jan 5, 2022

2022-01-05 06:22 ET – News Release

Also News Release (C-BEX) Benton Resources Inc

Mr. Abraham Drost of Clean Air Metals reports


Clean Air Metals Inc. and Benton Resources Inc. have released new assay results from the 2021 drill campaign from the Escape and Current PGE-Cu-Ni (platinum-group-element-copper-nickel) deposits at the companies’s Thunder Bay North project near Thunder Bay, Ont., Canada. Drilling operations are set to resume on Jan. 6, 2022.

New assays from the Escape South high-grade zone includes:


  • Hole ELR21-083A intersected 46.0 metres grading 19.6 grams per tonne platinum equivalent (PtEq) composed of 3.03 g/t platinum (Pt), 3.94 g/t palladium (Pd), 1.33 per cent copper (Cu) and 0.51 per cent nickel (Ni) from 399.0 to 445.0 m downhole including 31.0 m grading 25.0 g/t PtEq composed of 3.90 g/t platinum (Pt), 5.10 g/t palladium (Pd), 1.70 per cent copper (Cu) and 0.63 per cent nickel (Ni) from 405.0 to 436.0 m downhole.


The Escape deposit underwent 37,000 m of expansion drilling in 2021, which is expected to add materially to the maiden indicated resource of 849,481 ounces PtEq (6.16 g/t PtEq in 4.28 million tonnes) reported Jan. 20, 2021. The Current deposit 2.5 kilometres to the east has a well-defined indicated mineral resource of 2,233,575 PtEq ounces (5.79 g/t PtEq in 11.99 million tonnes).

Mineral resource endowment and platinum equivalents are quoted pursuant to the technical report and mineral resource estimate for the Thunder Bay North project, Thunder Bay, Ont., with an effective date of Jan. 20, 2021. The technical report was posted to SEDAR on March 4, 2021, and prepared by Nordmin Engineering Ltd. qualified person Glen Kuntz, PGeo, Ontario. Platinum equivalent calculations in the associated table are affected by the updated Commodities Research Unit two-year trailing average metal price assumptions utilized for the new preliminary economic assessment reported on Dec. 1, 2021.

Preliminary economic assessment (PEA)

The company announced a robust mine plan and cash flow model as part of a PEA for the Current and Escape PGE-Cu-Ni deposits of the Thunder Bay North project on Dec. 1, 2021. The related technical report is expected to be filed on SEDAR by Jan. 14, 2022.



Hole ID         From         To      Length        Pt+Pd       Cu+Ni         Pt        Pd        Cu        Ni     PtEq
                 (m)        (m)         (m)        (g/t)         (%)      (g/t)     (g/t)       (%)       (%)    (g/t)

ELR21-083A       364        366         2.0         1.11        0.40       0.48      0.63      0.22      0.18      3.8
ELR21-083A       399        445        46.0         6.97        1.84       3.03      3.94      1.33      0.51     19.6
**incl.          405        436        31.0         8.99        2.33       3.90      5.10      1.70      0.63     25.0
ELR21-084     233.75        235         1.3         1.86        0.13       0.89      0.98      0.07      0.06      3.8
ELR21-087A       373        393        20.0         2.89        0.73       1.33      1.56      0.54      0.20      8.1
ELR21-088        240        246         6.0         2.81        0.77       1.30      1.51      0.51      0.26      8.1
CL21-027         126        135         9.0         1.48        0.34       0.76      0.73      0.17      0.17      4.0
CL21-027         183        185         2.0         1.54        0.46       0.76      0.79      0.22      0.24      4.7
CL21-028         223     226.13         3.1         2.90        0.47       1.53      1.37      0.27      0.21      6.8
CL21-029         149        151         2.0         1.19        0.35       0.62      0.58      0.16      0.19      3.6
CL21-029         213        215         2.0         1.30        0.34       0.68      0.62      0.15      0.19      3.7
CL21-029         220     228.49         8.5         2.14        0.45       1.14      1.01      0.25      0.20      5.6
CL21-030         145        147         2.0         2.25        0.48       1.14      1.11      0.30      0.19      5.9
CL21-030         196        198         2.0         1.62        0.35       0.84      0.79      0.15      0.20      4.4
CL21-030         216        220         4.0         2.04        0.51       1.06      0.98      0.26      0.25      5.7
CL21-032         270        282        12.0         1.91        0.76       0.96      0.95      0.47      0.30      6.5
CL21-033         294     295.97         2.0         3.67        0.88       1.90      1.77      0.55      0.33      9.8
CL21-034A        292        294         2.0         2.24        0.43       1.18      1.06      0.20      0.23      5.7
CL21-034A        298        300         2.0         1.08        0.29       0.55      0.53      0.10      0.19      3.3

(1) All intercepts are estimated to be greater than 95 per cent of true width based on drill hole inclination.
(2) Mineralized intervals calculated at one-part-per-million Pt+Pd cut-off.                               


Abraham Drost, chief executive officer of Clean Air Metals, stated that: “Stepout drilling on the margins of the Escape South high-grade zone (HGZ) continues to deliver impressive assay results. Under the results of the recent PEA press release, the Escape South high-grade zone (HGZ) (greater than five g/t Pt+Pd) is identified as a high-value potential mining area at the base of the Escape deposit in years 5 and 6 of the PEA mine plan, pursuant to the recently delivered PEA press release (Dec. 1, 2021).

“There is a total of 37,000 m of previously reported drilling results from the Escape deposit in 2021, which [has] not yet applied to the mineral resource for the Thunder Bay North project. Assay results to date, along with the 2,000 m of core in the lab still awaiting assay, suggest good continuity of mineralization between sections along the 900 m trend of mineralization between the Escape South high-grade zone (HGZ) (greater than five g/t Pt+Pd) and Steepledge South zone.

“The high-grade Lower Current and Bridge zones of the upper Current deposit achieved a 90-per-cent conversion rate from indicated to potentially minable mineral resource for years 1 to 4 within the recently disclosed PEA mine plan, as defined by a mining shape optimizer (MSO) algorithm. An additional 10,000 m of infill drilling in the lower Current deposit is planned to improve drill density to support application of the MSO algorithm along trend, in the attempt to add additional minable material to the PEA.

“Up to 16,000 m of drilling is also planned to commence in mid-January, 2022, on frozen muskeg to follow up on certain discrete geophysical anomalies. These may represent the occurrence of low resistivity, high conductivity massive sulphide material at the base of the Escape and Current deposits within the Escape Lake fault zone corridor, consistent with the Norilsk mineral deposit model used by the company in Thunder Bay North magma conduit system.”

COVID-19 policy

Clean Air Metals continued to apply COVID-19 avoidance and personal protection measures for its geological staff, drilling contractor and service suppliers during the third quarter and has had zero occurrences of COVID-19-related illness year to date. Personnel are required to maintain physical distance, use personal protective equipment (PPE), self-monitor and self-isolate, or elect to work from home. Management had previously eliminated plans for a camp set up to service a planned diamond drill campaign on the Escape deposit. The company is aware of Thunder Bay health unit guidelines that provide for mandatory self-isolation for returning overseas.

Mineral exploration and development have been deemed essential services in the province of Ontario.

The company has procured the services of a locally staffed and serviced diamond drilling contractor to complete the diamond drilling programs.

Qualified person

Geoff Heggie, PhD, PGeo, a qualified person under National Instrument 43-101 and exploration manager for the company, has reviewed and approved all technical information in this press release.

Quality assurance/quality control

Clean Air Metals uses ALS, a well-established and recognized mineral assay and geochemical analytical services company. The Thunder Bay laboratory holds International Organization for Standardization 9000 accreditation; the Vancouver facility holds ISO 17025 registration.

All NQ-sized drill core is cut with a diamond-tipped saw blade with half of the core submitted to ALS for sample preparation and analysis. Core samples from selected intervals are individually bagged and tagged, gathered up in larger sealed poly bags and shipped to the sample prep facility in Thunder Bay, Ont., under custody of Clean Air personnel at all times. Sample preparation is completed at the ALS sample preparation facility located in Thunder Bay, Ont., and analysis is completed at the primary ALS assay laboratory located in Vancouver, B.C.

Clean Air follows a documented quality control procedure for its core assay sampling program consisting of the insertion of blind blanks, duplicates, and certified palladium-platinum and copper-nickel standards into the sample stream. The insertion procedure results in a minimum of 11-per-cent to 12-per-cent control sample frequency depending on the length of the sampled interval.

Gold, platinum and palladium are analyzed using fire assay (FA) with an inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) finish. Samples with grades above the optimal ICP-MS detection limits are analyzed using an optical emission spectroscopy method (ICP-OES)

Also, 33 elements of each sample, including copper, nickel, silver, chromium, cobalt and sulphur, are analyzed by a multielement analytical method using the atomic emission spectroscopy (ICP-AES) technique following four-acid digestion of the sample. When samples have grades above the optimal detection limits for this analytical method, they are reanalyzed using a high-grade method consisting of either ICP-AES or atomic absorption spectrometry (AAS) techniques.

Social engagement

Clean Air Metals and its wholly owned subsidiary, Panoramic PGMs (Canada) Ltd., acknowledge that the Thunder Bay North project is on the traditional territories of the Fort William First Nation, Red Rock First Nation and Biinjitiwabik Zaaging Anishinabek. The parties together are the co-operating participants in a memorandum of agreement dated Jan. 9, 2021.

The company appreciates the opportunity to work in these territories and remains committed to the recognition and respect of those who have lived, travelled and gathered on the lands since time immemorial. Clean Air Metals is committed to stewarding indigenous heritage and remains committed to building, fostering and encouraging a respectful relationship with first nations, Metis and Inuit peoples based upon principles of mutual trust, respect, reciprocity and collaboration in the spirit of reconciliation.

About Clean Air Metals Inc.

Clean Air Metals’ flagship asset is the 100-per-cent-owned, high-grade Thunder Bay North project, a platinum, palladium, copper and nickel project located near the city of Thunder Bay, Ont., and the Lac des Iles mine owned by Impala Platinum. The Clean Air Metals project hosts the Current Lake deposit and magma conduit and the company is actively exploring the Escape Lake deposit, a twin structure to the Current Lake deposit. Executive chairman Jim Gallagher and Mr. Drost lead an experienced team of geologists and engineers who are using the Norilsk magma conduit stratigraphic and mineral deposit model to guide continuing exploration and development studies. As the former CEO of North American Palladium Ltd., which owned the Lac des Iles mine prior to the sale to Impala Platinum in December, 2019, Mr. Gallagher and his team are credited with the mine turnaround and creation of significant value for shareholders.

We seek Safe Harbor.

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