VANCOUVER, Canada, June 3, 2019 – Sonoro Metals Corp., (TSXV: SMO | OTCQB: SMOFF | FRA: 23SP), (“Sonoro” and the “Company”), provides an update to studies underway regarding its proposed Test Heap Leach Pilot Operation at Cerro Caliche, Sonora State, Mexico, in accordance with its Fiscal Advisory Services Agreement (the “Agreement”) with Singapore-based InProved Pte. Ltd.
“We are proud of the high degree of skill and leadership demonstrated by our Hermosillo, Mexico-based technical team under the direction of VP Exploration, Mel Herdrick and Operations Manager, Jorge Diaz,” said Kenneth MacLeod, President and CEO of Sonoro. “The launching of metallurgical testing and preliminary pilot-plant design in conjunction with the ongoing drilling program, will ensure that all the elements needed to create a successful project are being managed simultaneously.”
In connection with the first work phase of its proposed Heap Leach Pilot Operation (HLPO) at Cerro Caliche, Sonoro reports that the results from its phase 1 and 2 drilling campaigns combined with drilling by other companies, have enabled the Company to outline sufficient oxidized, shallow, gold mineralization in the Japoneses-Cuervos zone, to sustain a pilot size operation, making it the planned mineralized material source for the HLPO.
Sonoro has engaged Geo Digital Imaging de Méxicoan (GDI), an independent engineering firm to develop the preliminary studies required to generate quality data for the development of the NI 43-101 compliant pre-feasibility study to assess the viability of the development of a heap leach plant at Cerro Caliche.
GDI is a Hermosillo-based independent mining engineering firm with a team of experts with extensive backgrounds in mine project development, with services that range from the development of project GIS (geo-info-system) to resource modeling, ore characterization, metallurgical testing and mine design. Among others, GDI’s clients include Agnico Eagle, Argonaut Gold, Fresnillo PLC, Alio Gold and Alamos Gold.
GDI has teamed up with Sonoro’s geological staff to develop the first block model of the zone. The model has been developed based on Sonoro’s best practice compliant database that includes up to date drilling results and Sonoro’s geologic interpretation. Modeling was done with the latest software and engineering techniques and is also best practice compliant.
Accordingly, GDI has been engaged to conduct initial ore characterization and metallurgical tests, with preliminary characterization studies, bottle roll and leach column tests underway. Gold mineralization characterization studies are led by a specialist at the University of Sonora. The metallurgical tests are being conducted under the supervision of metallurgist Sandra Orona, who is an expert in metallurgical processes and quality control, with several years of experience working for SGS Mineral Services in Canada and Mexico. The tests are being conducted at a dedicated facility that has been set up for this purpose in Magdalena, Sonora State. These tests are expected to take approximately 8 weeks to complete.
For metallurgical column testing, Sonoro’s geological team selected samples representative of the veins and veinlet mineralization zones at the Japoneses-Cuervos zone, which were collected and prepared for the test by Sonoro’s geologic team in accordance with best practices in the industry. The first testing stage started with 12 columns. These preliminary metallurgical tests are being conducted under Canadian National Instrument protocols, but are not NI 43-101 compliant, due to the technical personnel’s lack of registration as QP status persons. These experienced technical consultants are very familiar with the National Instrument protocols, due to their recent and continuing engagements for several Canadian and Mexican mining companies operating in the area.
GDI’s engineering team is led by Gildardo Vejar Ruiz, a Hermosillo-based independent consultant and mining engineer, with an extensive background in mine planning and development including supervising the development of Alamos Gold’s Mulatos Mine and Alio Gold Corp.’s San Francisco Mine. The team conducted preliminary level estimations of economic variables such as operating costs, pit slope alternatives, including economic assessment of social, environmental and governmental economic impact on costs. The purpose of the estimations is to develop a preliminary order of magnitude and footprint design in order to focus the forthcoming NI 43-101 studies on the areas that would suit the development of the HLPO. With this data and GDI’s block model, the team conducted sensitivity analysis for a range of costs and metallurgical Au recoveries, generating several possible pit geometries with their associated stripping ratios, ore and waste haul roads, waste and process sites, pad size requirements and associated infrastructure location. This work has enabled GDI to generate an order of magnitude footprint of the HLPO and future NI 43-101 compliant work will be focused within the developed footprint.
Upon their completion, results from the metallurgical studies, if positive, will be incorporated in the sensitivity analysis in order to define the characteristics of the HLPO preliminary design, which would be then updated to a NI 43-101 level.
Since there are positive expectations that GDI’s block model will continue to expand with the advance in exploration, Sonoro will continue updating its database as drill results are received and prior to NI 43-101 level work, the sensitivity analysis will be updated. It is expected that the preliminary work will be finalized during September of this year and NI 43-101 studies will then commence.
The technical process is being supervised by Sonoro’s Operations Manager, Jorge Diaz, who is both a mining engineer and metallurgical engineer from the University of Guanajuato, Mex., and MS in Mineral Economics from Colorado School of Mines. He has carried out this role many times in the past, including leading the development, construction and operation of the La Colorada Mine; the development of both Alamos Gold’s Mulatos Mine and Morgain Mineral’s El Cairo/Castillo mine and also acting as advisor regarding the development of Pediment Gold’s (now Argonaut Gold’s) San Antonio project. His company, Interminera, continues to act as advisor to Argonaut.
Stephen Kenwood, P. Geo., a director of Sonoro, is a Qualified Person within the context of National Instrument 43-101 and has read and approved this news release. Readers are cautioned that the presence of mineralization on historic mines adjacent to or on Cerro Caliche is not necessarily indicative of gold mineralization in the concessions held by the company.
About Sonoro Metals Corp.
Sonoro Metals Corp. is a publicly listed exploration and development company with two exploration stage precious metal properties in Sonora State, Mexico. The company has highly experienced operational and management teams with proven track records for the discovery and development of natural resource deposits.
On behalf of the Board of SONORO METALS CORP.
Per: “Kenneth MacLeod”
President & CEO
For further information, please contact:
Sonoro Metals Corp. – Corporate Communications:
Bill Campbell – Tel: (604) 565-5609
Email: [email protected]
Forward-Looking Statement Cautions: This press release contains certain “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of Canadian securities legislation, relating to, among other things, the Company’s plans for the drilling, metallurgical testing, and engineering studies to be undertaken on the above-described Cerro Caliche Concessions, located in the municipality of Cucurpe, Sonora, Mexico, and the Company’s future exploration and development plans for those properties. Although the Company believes that such statements are reasonable based on current circumstances, it can give no assurance that such expectations will prove to be correct. Forward-looking statements are statements that are not historical facts; they are generally, but not always, identified by the words “expects,” “plans,” “anticipates,” “believes,” “intends,” “estimates,” “projects,” “aims,” “potential,” “goal,” “objective,” “prospective,” and similar expressions, or that events or conditions “will,” “would,” “may,” “can,” “could” or “should” occur, or are those statements, which, by their nature, refer to future events. The Company cautions that forward-looking statements are based on the beliefs, estimates and opinions of the Company’s management on the date the statements are made and they involve a number of risks and uncertainties, including the possibility of unfavourable interim exploration and engineering results, the lack of sufficient future financing to carry out exploration plans, and unanticipated changes in the legal, regulatory and permitting requirements for the Company’s exploration programs. There can be no assurance that such statements will prove to be accurate, as actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. Accordingly, readers should not place undue reliance on forward-looking statements. The Company disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by law or the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange. Readers are encouraged to review the Company’s complete public disclosure record on SEDAR at www.sedar.com.
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