Ridgemont Iron Ore Corp has started its 2012 exploration programme on the Lac Virot Iron Ore Project in Labrador, Canada.

The Lac Virot Iron project consists of 114km² of mineral licenses located in the southern Labrador Trough.

The mining firm will drill up to 26 holes, totalling 5,000m, as well as an 882 line-km airborne geophysical gravity survey as part of its C$3m ($2.94m) programme.

Ridgemont selected consulting firm Fugro Airborne to carry out a series of ground magnetometer and gravity surveys over the ore properties.

Ridgemont Iron Ore Corp president and chief executive officer Brian Penney said, "The property’s potential, located within 20km of four producing iron ore mines within the Labrador Trough, was one of the key factors that led us to pursue the acquisition of IronOne."

The company intends to follow up on the positive coincident airborne magnetic survey and surface sampling results from 2011.

Analytical results recorded during the 2011 field programme ranged from 16.6% to 60.5% Fe as total iron, with an average of 30.6% Fe.

The firm has selected Major Drilling International of Winnipeg to supply two helicopter-portable drill rigs for the iron ore project.