The Florida Canyon project is held in a joint venture between Solitario and Nexa Resources, the world's fourth-largest zinc miner. All permits required to begin drilling have been received and a new 39-month community agreement has been signed.
The program consists of drilling 41 core holes totalling approximately 17,000m (56,000ft) designed to test highly prospective resource expansion opportunities identified by deposit modelling during preparation of the 2017 Florida Canyon PEA. Proposed drilling is focused on significant gaps and offsets within and around the drill pattern defining the known high-grade zinc-sulphide resource. Drilling is expected to continue until all 41 core holes are completed, but, depending on this year's weather pattern, the rainy season may interrupt the program.
Significant progress in interpreting Florida Canyon mineralisation was made in 2018 with the relogging of all previously drilled core totalling approximately 117,000m in 487 core holes. Drilling will test for extensions of high-grade zinc-sulphide mineralisation in four different areas of the deposit.
Chris Herald, president and CEO of Solitario, said: "This drilling program is the culmination of an intensive 18-month effort to better understand the geometry of Florida Canyon mineralisation and the potential scale of the project, which we believe is significantly larger than is currently defined. The objective of this drilling campaign is to add significant new resources to the existing Florida Canyon resource base. Every drill hole is designed to intersect high probability extensions to known high-grade zinc mineralisation. We are excited about the impact this drilling could have on project economics. We are very pleased with the cooperation and support that the local communities have confirmed with the signing of a new long-term community agreement. This agreement ensures employment opportunities for local residents and provides for construction of road access to important community centres and project work areas."