CYPRUS PROJECT

Cyprus Project

Many of the exposed pyrite-copper deposits around the Troodos Mountains in Cyprus have been mined for copper since the earliest Bronze Age. Indeed, the word copper is linked to Cyprus (Latin cupreus). Evidence for ancient mining is widespread with more than 130 slag piles from ancient smelting documented. The largest slag pile was at Skouriotissa and was estimated to be about one million tonnes. Modern mining commenced in Cyprus in the 1920s with more than 74 million tonnes of massive sulphide ore extracted from about 30 deposits in the following 50 years. These deposits were largely exploited for copper and pyrite, but there was some small-scale exploitation of gold and silver. The largest mine in Cyprus was Mavrovouni (Black Mountain) where 16.5 million tonnes at 4.5% copper was officially extracted between 1929 and 1974. Mining across Cyprus mostly ceased when Turkey invaded the northern part of the island in 1974.

Chesterfield Resources has three (3) project areas in Cyprus, comprising seven (7) granted Prospecting Permits and six (6) applications for Prospecting Permits, which are expected to be granted by the end of 2018. The project areas cover abandoned mines, known prospects with exposed mineralisation and other indicators of nearby massive sulphide systems.

Chesterfield’s initial focus is to advance the Troodos West Project where a number of high-priority prospects have already been identified.

Troodos West Project

The Troodos West Project comprises seven (7) granted Prospecting Permits covering 3,211 hectares (32.11 km2) on the western side of the Troodos Mountains. Within the Troodos West Project area there are four (4) abandoned mines, other prospects with exposed sulphide mineralisation and some ancient slag piles.

Recorded production in the Troodos West Project was:

  • Limni (open cast) – 8.1 Mt at 1.11 % Cu and 15 % S
  • Kinousa (underground) – 271 kt @ 2.88 % Cu and 42 % S
  • Uncle Charles (open cast) – 229 kt @ 2.23 % Cu and 47 % S
  • Evloimeni (open cast) – 63 kt @ 0.68 % Cu and 19 % S

The Troodos West Project area is considered highly prospective for new discoveries because:

  • There is extensive direct evidence for copper mineralisation, such as outcrops of primary copper-pyrite-sulphide, malachite staining and ancient slag piles
  • There are potential extensions around known mines and prospects
  • Prospective host rocks are only exposed over approximately 50 % of the area but have already yielded four mines and numerous prospects. Modern exploration techniques should be able to locate blind deposits beneath the shallowly covered areas
  • Umber and ochre vectors have been mapped in the area
  • Work by Northern Lion Gold discovered new prospects with high-grade copper-gold-silver-zinc mineralisation that have not been fully evaluated

Troodos North Project

Chesterfield’s Troodos North Project comprises five (5) Prospecting Permit applications on the northern flanks of the Troodos Mountains. It is expected that these permits will be granted by the end of 2018.

Chesterfield’s Prospecting Permit applications include the abandoned Agrokipia A/B and Memi mines and are adjacent to the abandoned Kokkinoyia, Alestos and Kokkinopezoula mines. The abandoned Mitsero copper floatation treatment plant is about 1.5 km north of the Troodos North Project area.

Recorded production in and adjacent to the Troodos North Project was:

  • Agrokipia A (open cast) – 333 kt @ 1.0 % Cu and 30-44 % S
  • Agrokipia B (underground) – 74 kt @ 4.0 % Cu and 40 % S
  • Memi pyrite (open cast) – 2.1 Mt at 26 % S
  • Kokkinoyia (underground) – 481 kt @ 2.0 % Cu and 30-40 % S
  • Alestos (open cast) – 661 kt @ 0.9 % Cu
  • Kokkinopezoula pyrite (open cast) – 5.5 Mt @ 24 % S

The Troodos North Project is considered prospective for new discoveries because:

  • There is widespread direct evidence for copper mineralisation, such as outcrops of primary copper-pyrite-sulphide, malachite staining and ancient slag piles
  • The high-grade copper at the Agrokipia A and Kokkinoyia mines demonstrates grade potential, whereas the two large pyrite mines at Memi and Kokkinopezoula demonstrate the size potential in the area
  • There are potential extensions around known mines and prospects
  • The permit area includes the South Mathiatas prospect where in 2006 EMED Mining reported a 2.1 Mt @ 0.95 % Zn inferred resource (JORC 2004)

Chesterfield has not completed any work at the Troodos North Project except for starting a desk-top review of available archival material. The presence of gold has yet to be tested by Chesterfield.

TROODOS NORTH PROJECT 1
TROODOS EAST PROJECT 1

Troodos East Project

The Troodos East Project comprises one Prospecting Permit application surrounding the Anglesidhes Prospect on the eastern edge of the Troodos Mountains. Historical production in the 1930s at Anglesidhes was 88 long tons of cuprous pyrite with 5.98 % Cu and 1,336 short tons with 24.5 g/t Au and 86.4 g/t Ag. The Troodos East Project area is positioned to test the north and south extension of the Anglesidhes prospect where the target rocks are shallowly covered by recent sediment.

Chesterfield has not completed any work at the Troodos East Project except for starting a desk-top review of available archival material.

History – Cyprus Mining

Many of the exposed pyrite-copper deposits around the Troodos Mountains have been mined for copper since the earliest Bronze Age. Cyprus was very prosperous during these ancient times and copper production supported numerous Cypriot city kingdoms. Copper production increased markedly when Cyprus became a Roman province in 58 BCE. There is widespread evidence of ancient mining throughout the Troodos Mountains with the most obvious being the many ancient slag piles. The largest slag pile was at Skouriotissa and was estimated to be more than one million tonnes.

Modern mining commenced in the 1920s with more than 74 million tonnes of pyrite-copper ore extracted from about 30 deposits in the following 50 years. Production focussed on pyrite, copper, gold and silver, although some of the Cyprus deposits also contain appreciable amounts of zinc. The largest mine was Mavrovouni (Black Mountain) where 16.5 million tonnes at 4.5 % Cu were extracted between 1929 and 1974. Copper production through a heap-leach SX-EW circuit continues at the Skouriotissa Mine. In addition, many of the deposits host appreciable amounts of primary gold. In places, the rusty weathered zones above many pyrite-copper deposits are so strongly enriched in gold and silver that during the 1930s they were exploited. In 2017, Hellenic Mining Company started a small gold circuit at Skouriotissa to process oxide material.

Copper mining in Cyprus was significantly disrupted and essentially curtailed in the 1970s after Cyprus was partitioned following the Turkish invasion of the northern part of the island. This was further compounded by adverse changes to global supply and demand in the copper market. Although Hellenic Mining Company restarted Skouriotissa in 1994, for an area that has been so productive for so long and that offers such prospectivity, the paucity of modern exploration and investment is startling.

Geology – Cyprus

The island of Cyprus is located in the eastern part of the Mediterranean Sea along the southern margin of the Anatolian Tectonic Plate. The copper-pyrite deposits in Cyprus, and the area of interest to Chesterfield for mineral exploration, are in a geological feature known as the Troodos Ophiolite – a fragment of volcanic seafloor which formed in the Tethys Ocean about 92 million years ago. At this time, seafloor volcanic activity stopped as the Troodos seafloor collided with the Anatolian Tectonic Plate and the entire Troodos seafloor domain was rotated 90° counter-clockwise. The Troodos seafloor was then overlain by white calcareous marine sediments and about 14 million years ago the Troodos Mountains started to emerge from the sea. One important feature of the Troodos Mountains is that as you travel from the sea to their peak you travel from the ancient seafloor through increasingly deeper parts of the ancient seafloor crust (despite going uphill). Therefore, the target volcanic rocks form a ring around the foothills of the Troodos Mountains.

Cyprus Geological Survey Webpage

The Troodos rock types are basically:

  • Post-Volcanic Rocks
    • Recent coarse-grained alluvial sediments eroded and deposited locally as Troodos emerged from the sea
    • Post-volcanic sediments: white calcareous sediments deposited in the proto-Mediterranean Sea on the now quiescent Troodos seafloor
  • Troodos Ophiolite
    • Volcanic rocks – various lavas and dykes with very few sedimentary units. The volcanic rocks host the target copper-pyrite deposits
    • Sheeted dyke complex – composed of greater than 50 % mafic dykes that fed the overlying volcanic eruptions
    • Plutonic Complex – upper gabbro unit and lower ultramafic unit (extensively serpentinised) related to melting and transport of the volcanic magmas

The copper-pyrite deposits in Cyprus formed from hydrothermal fluids (very hot, overpressured water) that circulated through the Troodos seafloor during the ancient volcanic period. The Cyprus deposits are part of a global deposit set known as Volcanic-Hosted Massive Sulphide (VHMS) deposits. Such deposits have been documented forming along today’s seafloor domains.

“Black smoker” sulphide-rich hydrothermal water venting from the seafloor (Nature Geoscience November 2015);
Schematic of single VHMS vent site with main features

Modern VHMS deposits form in clusters and this feature is also seen in Cyprus.

Modern hydrothermal field at Trans-Atlantic Geotraverse (TAG) site compared to Cyprus

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