Since commencing resource drilling at Aurizona in 2007, Luna Gold has been continually evaluating the potential of the surrounding district to host additional million-ounce gold deposits. This evaluation initially involved low-key data integration and subsequent analysis of both proprietary and public historical exploration datasets followed-up with ground reconnaissance work including regional scale geological mapping and the registering of historic and more recent artisanal gold workings. Based on these studies, Luna commenced a land staking program in 2008 and now controls approximately 241,400 hectares of exploration licenses at Luna Greenfields covering Brazil’s newest gold belt. Access across the Luna Greenfields is very good via a network of secondary laterite roads. Outcrop is scarce and for the most part limited to historic artisanal gold workings. This lack of outcrop, combined with poor infrastructure prior to 2000 ensured that the district did not benefit from any significant modern exploration prior to Luna’s entry into Maranhão state in 2007. These factors constitute a major strategic advantage for Luna, which controls a significant portion of this new belt and whose exploration methods are specifically designed to discover gold deposits in deeply weathered tropical terrains.
AngloGold Joint Venture
In May 2016, Luna Gold entered into a joint venture agreement with AngloGold Ashanti Holdings plc (AngloGold) related to a subset of the Luna Greenfields, comprising 23 exploration licenses covering 191,400 hectares. As per the terms of the JV Agreement, AngloGold can earn a 70% interest in the greenfields properties by spending $14.0 million on exploration expenditures over a four year period, with a minimum $2.0 million commitment in the first year. AngloGold commenced exploration in August 2016 and is undertaking extensive airborne surveys over the entire land package, including Luna Gold’s brownfields properties and the Aurizona mine which, when combined with surface geochemistry, will define targets for an extensive drilling program in the JV greenfields by AngloGold. Data from the airborne surveys will also help to guide Luna Gold’s exploration program on the brownfields properties.
The regional geology of the Luna Greenfields Project is similar to the geology that underlies the Aurizona Project, both of which are located within the São Luis Craton (SLC). The SLC consists of the Paleoproterozoic Aurizona Group metavolcano-sedimentary succession, volcanics and granitoids of the Tromaí Intrusive Suite covered by Phanerozoic sedimentary basin deposits and recent coastal sediments. Collectively, Aurizona and Tromaí Intrusive Suite are referred to as the Granite Greenstone Terrain of Northwest Maranhão. Structural trends throughout the SLC are dominated by north north-east to south south-west and west north-west to east south-east trending structures and there is a strong association between gold occurrences and structural lineaments which form distinct gold corridors.