Sula Iron and Gold has started drilling at its 153km² Ferensola iron project located in the Sula-Kangari Greenstone belt in Sierra Leone.
The drilling is part of this year's exploration programme, which intends to define a JORC direct shipping ore (DSO) iron mineral resource estimate by the end of the year.
Exploration follows the nine hole 2,000m drill programme completed in September 2013, which demonstrated consistently high-grade iron with reported results of 14.59m grading at 55.54% iron and 29.7m at 52.25% iron.
Sula Iron said steady news flow is anticipated and the first drill cores are planned to be sent for analysis in May.
The company noted that the results will help to underpin the commercial value of Ferensola, which is prospective for both iron and gold.
Sula Iron and Gold CEO Nick Warrell said that, with infill drilling now underway, the company is set to significantly advance the Ferensola project as it looks to prove up the iron mineralisation potential with a focus on defining a JORC DSO iron mineral resource estimate by the end of the year.
"Defining a maiden resource will be a major milestone for the company and I am confident that with a fully-funded programme, a proven exploration team and established infrastructure we have the necessary foundations in place to achieve this," Warrell said.
Exploration work at Ferensola has confirmed the presence of banded iron formation (BIF) at surface, which has a known strike length of 3.1km.
The BIF is proven to extend north-east from African Mineral's 12.8 billion tonne Tonkolili iron mine into Sula's licence area, which is located contiguously to Tonkolili.
A 2,000m scout drilling programme conducted over a 2.2km section of BIF in July 2013, confirmed consistently high-grade iron mineralisation at Ferensola.
Image: The drilling at Ferensola iron project is part of Sula Iron's exploration programme for this year. Photo: courtesy of Sula Iron and Gold.