The Kalahari Suture Zone Project covers a large portion of the KSZ magnetic anomaly in southwest Botswana.
The KSZ anomaly was subject to a government-backed exploration programme in the 1980s that yielded encouraging early signs. However, thick overlying Kalahari cover prohibited exploration and drilling at the time.
Kavango is now using modern surveying and drilling technology to reassess the KSZ’s potential for nickel, copper, and platinum group element-rich sulphide ore bodies.
The Company began by consolidating a number of KSZ licences, relogging core from historical drilling, and conducting its own surveying. This led it to conclude there was enough sulphur in the KSZ’s molten magma when it formed, which could have potentially created metal sulphides.
Metal sulphides can coalesce to form the massive sulphides responsible for some of the biggest mineral discoveries worldwide. Specifically, the KSZ appears to present a distinctly similar setting to the Norilsk mining centre in Siberia. This area alone accounts for 90% of Russia’s nickel, 55% of its copper, and virtually all of its platinum group metals.
Kavango has flown Airborne Electromagnetic surveys over its project area. From this, it has interpretated the potential presence of extensive magma plumbing systems featuring vertical dykes and horizontal sills that could have transported molten magma from deep chambers to surface vents. Over time, this molten magma could have cooled to form gabbroic intrusions.
Geophysical 3D modelling by Mira Geoscience has identified numerous gabbroic sills displaying distinct Norilsk-style gull wings of intrusive, solidified magma. The theory is, these “gull wings” could have linked to deeper keels that could have been closely connected to magma feeder zones. This specific area is where heavy sulphide liquids containing copper, nickel, and PGEs could have gravitated, accumulated, and eventually solidified to form metal sulphides.
Using Time Domain Electromagnetic (“TDEM”) surveys, Kavango aims to identify highly conductive anomalies as possible drill targets for mineralisation.
The KSZ is located on a nexus of intersecting regional faults and structures, creating a prime setting for multiple ore deposit models. These include nickel, copper, PGE massive sulphides and iron oxide copper gold (uranium) systems.
Kavango is focusing its exploration efforts on two stacked systems – the younger Karoo intrusives (circa 200m years old) and the deeper seated Proterozoic intrusives (circa 1 billion years old)
A Proof-of-Concept Drill Campaign Final Report completed by geologist Richard Hornsey, a leading specialist in nickel exploration, concluded that Kavango’s drilling to date has:
- Provided geochemical indicators of magmatic Ni-Cu-PGE mineralising processes (depletion and enrichment) throughout the KSZ, for both the Karoo and Proterozoic (Tshane Complex) intrusions
- Identified previously unrecognised PGE potential in the KSZ South
- Introduced new ore deposit models (Norilsk, Insiswa, Eagle, Tamarack, and Uitkomst), which will allow Kavango to vector towards the right host rocks and upgrade future targeting
- Confirmed Kavango is using appropriate geophysical technologies and data analysis techniques to isolate potential mineral bearing targets in a scalable programme
Kavango is currently reviewing its existing datasets to inform the next stages of its exploration programme.