Norwest Minerals hunts out 31 critical mineral targets prospective for niobium and rare earths across large West Arunta holding

Feb 29, 2024 | News

  • A new geophysical interpretation has identified 31 targets across Norwest’s West Arunta ground holding
  • Tenement E80/5031 includes a number of high-priority magnetic targets and associated geochem anomalies within an 8km x 2km drill-ready zone
  • A gravity acquisition program will soon be undertaken to refine drill targeting


Special Report: A new geophysical study undertaken by Southern Geoscience Consultants (SGC) has identified 31 potential new critical mineral targets across four newly acquired West Arunta tenements.

Norwest Minerals (ASX:NWM) scored 360km2 of ground in WA’s West Arunta region earlier this month, snapping up four tenements including E80/5846 – the closest tenement immediately south of WA1 Resources and its Luni niobium rare earths discovery.

Before Luni set the region alight from an exploration perspective in 2022, the West Arunta was considered one of the least studied and understood areas of the state by WA’s Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety (DMIRS).

It was a region touted by geologists as “something special” due to its lightly explored and highly mineralised nature but one where, given its sheer remoteness (straddling the WA and NT borders), few have been able to spend much time and effort in.

As the one of the area’s first movers, NWM has been exploring the West Arunta belt since 2019, developing the field expertise and local relationships necessary to ensure a timely start to exploration activities across the new, highly prospective ground holding.


Targets ranked according to size

Using government and open file geophysical data as well as information from work undertaken between 2016 and 2018, NWM has now identified prospective carbonatite, IOCG, niobium and rare earth targets across its tenement package.

The targets – 31 in total – have been ranked according to factors such as size, structural setting and geophysical responses.

NWM has matched the new geophysical target occurrences to critical mineral anomalies identified from recent analysis of +13,000 fine-fraction (multi-element assayed) soils collected in 2021 and 2022.

Atlas Geophysics has been engaged to undertake a gravity ground survey over the key West Arunta critical mineral target areas with the program kicking off in four weeks.


Ready to be drilled

“The new geophysical study results provide further confirmation of the excellent prospectivity our West Arunta ground package holds for a major critical mineral discovery,” NWM chief executive Charles Schaus says.

“Many of the high priority targets are located within tenement E80/5031 where Norwest undertook a large heritage study late last year.

“This area is drill ready with only the gravity survey required to finalise drill hole positions.”


This article was developed in collaboration with Norwest Minerals, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing