The Astro Project is a 288 square-kilometre exploration property located in the Northwest Territories along the Yukon border close to the Canol Road. The Astro project is located within the territories of the Sahtu Dene and Metis Comprehensive Land Claim agreement and Orogen are committed to developing a positive mutually beneficial relationship based on respect and transparency.
The property contains outcropping gold mineralization in a ten-kilometre-long structural corridor. Gold mineralization is developed within and flanking the hornfelsed aureole of the Border granodiorite pluton. Identified gold mineralization consists of gold-arsenic-antimony bearing quartz veins, gold- bismuth skarn and gold associated with disseminated sulphides in siltstone. Known gold showings exhibit structural control along a series of northwest-striking faults down dropping hornfels and sedimentary rocks on the east side of the Border pluton.
Surface sampling of gossanous showings at the Radio, Ultraviolet and Microwave prospects returned chip-channel results up to 17.7 grams per tonne (“g/t”) gold over 30.0 metres. Two additional prospects on the property (Infrared and Gamma) are defined by gold-in-soil anomalies along the range front.
The Astro project is the result of a two-year, US$1.8 million generative, “Mackenzie Alliance” with Newmont Mining Corporation who designated the project under the option phase of the Alliance. In 2019, Newmont funded a US$1.4 million exploration program that included a VTEM and high-resolution magnetics survey and eleven reverse-circulation (RC) scout drill holes. Astro is fully permitted through 2024.
Orogen, in partnership with Newmont, conducted two field seasons of generative exploration in the Misty Creek Embayment targeting areas of anomalous regional government survey (RGS) stream-sediment geochemistry in areas of prospective geology and structure. The Alliance used government datasets from the Yukon and Northwest Territories to generate targets for Carlin-style, sedimentary-rock-hosted gold deposits and applied Newmont’s proprietary Bulk Leach Extractable Gold (BLEG) technique over select areas within the 23,250 square kilometre Alliance area. The exploration program included 1,046 stream sediment samples, 400 rock chip samples, 2,300 soil samples, detailed mapping, and staking of 891 square kilometres of claims. The work led to the designation of the Astro gold project in the southern portion of the Alliance area.
In 2018, work at Astro involved follow-up stream-sediment and soil sampling that outlined a ten-kilometre-long corridor of gold anomalism originating from a series of northwest-striking faults exposed along the range front. The faults offset sandstone, siltstone and lime mudstone intruded by the Border pluton and the smaller Hit stock in Yukon. Prospecting along the corridor initially identified the Radio prospect, a magnetite-pyrite skarn horizon that returned up to 30 metres @17.7g/t gold in chip-channel samples, and the Microwave prospect, an exposure of silicified, gossanous sandstone that returned 18 metres @ 3.6g/t gold from chip-channel samples. The 2018 program also outlined two other coherent gold-in-soil anomalies over areas of sparse outcrop and thin till cover along the range front and resulted in the designation of the Astro Project
In 2019, field work on the Astro Project included focussed mapping and sampling, hand trenching, an airborne geophysical survey and eleven reverse-circulation (RC) holes totalling 1111 metres. The results from this program continued to highlight a structural corridor of gold prospects extending for at least ten kilometres. The mapping program identified another gold-bearing skarn one kilometre southeast of Radio (Ultraviolet with four metres at 6.1 g/t gold in chip-channel samples) and gold-bearing quartz veins in siltstone west of Radio. The RC scout drilling program, in turn identified several new gold-bearing zones, including an interval of mineralized granodiorite east of Radio and silicified siltstone in a range-bounding fault at the Gamma prospect. Better results from the RC scout drilling included 3 metres @ 3.1 g/t gold in RAD 19-01, 7.6 metres @ 0.7 g/t gold in RAD19-04 and 6 metres @ 1.1 g/t gold in GAM19-01.