TORONTO, CANADA, March 1, 2023 – US Copper Corp. (“US Copper” or the “Company”) (TSX Venture: USCU) (OTCQB: USCUF) (Frankfurt: C73) is pleased to announce it has signed a contract for a drill program at the Engels deposit, part of the Company’s wholly-owned Moonlight-Superior Copper Project, located in Plumas County, California. The drill program will include 15 reverse circulation drill holes into the oxide cap that sits on top of the Engels’ sulfide deposit. The drill program is scheduled to commence in the second quarter 2023, when access permits.
Objectives of the drill program include:
1. Upgrading and potentially expanding the current oxide resource estimate;
2. Providing samples for preliminary metallurgical evaluation; and
3. Providing initial data for inclusion in a preliminary economic assessment (“PEA”) on the Engels oxide deposit.
The oxide cap at Engels is developed to depths greater than 230 feet (“ft”) over an area of at least 1,000 ft by 500 ft. Sample intercepts from prior drill programs reveal a high-grade copper oxide cap as the table below illustrates. These results were included in the 2013 resource estimate of 2.5 million tons (“MT”) at 1.05% as contained in the Company’s NI 43-101Technical Report and Resource Estimate for the Superior Project, Plumas County, California, with a refiled date of November 7, 2014, which can be viewed on the US Copper’s website and on www.sedar.com.
Table 1: Sample of Historic drill results within the Oxide Zone showing minimum 30’ intervals carrying greater than 1.0% Cu.
|DH#||from||to||Interval (ft)||Cu %|
“In 2022, the Company elected to conserve capital and review our large historic database for additional opportunities.” commented Stephen Dunn, US Copper’s President and CEO. “Prior operators had identified oxide caps at both Moonlight and Engels. That led us to reevaluate the potential to develop a starter oxide open pit mine at Engels through a first phase drill program aimed at establishing greater oxide mineralization at Engels than what was included in the 2014 resource estimate.”
“This oxide mineralization is not closed off in any direction and has the potential to be a stand-alone, open pit copper mine. Once we have further delineated and defined the oxide resource at Engels, a preliminary economic assessment can be undertaken to explore a starter pit production scenario while we further develop mining scenarios for the larger sulfide deposits at Moonlight. In conjunction with the Moonlight deposit and the Superior deposit, which was enhanced by last year’s drill program, the combined 3-pit resource has the potential to be a long-lived profitable mining operation.”
The Engels deposit is one of 3 significant copper deposits on US Copper’s Moonlight-Superior property. It is located 6,000 ft east of our 300 MT 0.30% copper Moonlight deposit and 11,000 ft north of the 60 MT 0.43% copper Superior deposit (see “Technical Report and Preliminary Economic Assessment for the Moonlight Deposit, Moonlight-Superior Copper Project, California, USA” dated April 12, 2018). Initial efforts to mine-process the oxide (carbonate) ore in the early 1900’s failed due to technological shortcomings. In 1914-15 sulfide ore was discovered at Engels during development of the 5th level, and shortly thereafter Engels and the nearby Superior properties were consolidated under the Engels Mining Company and production and processing of the sulfide ore began. Consolidated production from Engels-Superior in the 1915-1930 period yielded approximately 4.2 MT of ore at a grade of 2.2% copper. The majority of the production came from Engels. Mine workings at Engels are extensive and include many tens of thousands of feet of drifts, crosscuts, and stopes on ten levels accessed by adits and six levels accessed from a winze sunk from the No. 10 level.
In the 1960s-70s Placer AMEX did extensive work in the district which resulted in the discovery of the Moonlight deposit, partial delineation of the Superior deposit and an evaluation of the Engels deposit that included an internal company open pit estimate of 19 million tons of sulfide material with a grade of 0.63% Copper.
US Copper had a PEA prepared on its Moonlight deposit in 2018 that showed positive economics at $3.15 per pound copper. It was determined that providing higher grade ore from our Superior and/or Engels deposits into the Moonlight mine plan would substantially enhance the Project’s economics by potentially increasing cash flows in the initial years of production. The recently completed drill program at Superior was designed specifically for that purpose, and this Engels Phase I Program will outline the potential for a second starter pit for the Moonlight plant. Ultimately, the updated Engels and Superior resources will be incorporated into a revised Moonlight PEA.
The scientific and technical content of this press release has been reviewed and approved by George Cole, M.Sc., Director of US Copper who is a “Qualified Person” as defined in National Instrument 43-101 Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects. George Cole is a Registered Professional Geologist through AIPG (CPG-11687).
About US Copper Corp
US Copper controls approximately 13 square miles of patented and unpatented federal mining claims in the Light’s Creek Copper District in Plumas County, NE California; essentially, the entire District. The District contains substantial copper (silver) sulfide and copper oxide resources in three deposits – Moonlight, Superior and Engels, as well as several partially tested and untested exploration targets.
The Superior and Engels Mines operated from about 1915-1930 producing over 161 million pounds of copper from over 4 million tons of rock containing 2.2% copper with silver and gold credits.
The Moonlight Deposit was discovered and drilled by Placer Amex during the 1960’s. Details of the resources on US Copper’s property and the parameters used to calculate them can be found in the “Technical Report and Preliminary Economic Assessment for the Moonlight Deposit, Moonlight-Superior Copper Project, California, USA” dated April 12, 2018, on both the company’s website at www.uscoppercorp.com or on www.sedar.com under the US Copper Corp profile.
For Further Information Contact:
Mr. Stephen Dunn, President, CEO and Director, US Copper Corp (416) 361-2827 or email [email protected].
Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this press release.
This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of applicable Canadian and U.S. securities laws and regulations, including statements regarding the future activities of the Company. Forward-looking statements reflect the current beliefs and expectations of management and are identified by the use of words including “will”, “hopes”, “anticipates”, “expected to”, “plans”, “planned”, “intends” and other similar words. Actual results may differ significantly. The achievement of the results expressed in forward-looking statements is subject to a number of risks, including those described in the Company’s management discussion and analysis as filed with the Canadian securities regulatory authorities which are available at www.sedar.com. Investors are cautioned not to place undue reliance upon forward-looking statements.