The Shakespeare Ni-Cu-PGM Project is located 70km south-west of Sudbury, Ontario. The project is located just north of the Trans Canada highway leading into Sudbury. The project site can also be connected to the hydro electric power grid and has year round road access.
The proximity to Sudbury itself also represents a significant opportunity to fast track the project back into production again, given that significant milling and smelting capacity remain within trucking distance of the project.
Local access road leading to the Shakespeare project from the Trans Canada highway
The Shakespeare Deposit is located south of the boundary of the Superior Province and the Southern Provinces. The former is largely composed of Archean-aged granitoids and gneisses that have been intruded by the Early Proterozoic East Bull Lake and Agnew Lake Intrusions. The Early Proterozoic Southern Province is largely composed of metavolcanic rocks and sedimentary rocks of the HuronianSupergroup. All of these rocks have been cut by Nipissing Diabase, Sudbury Breccia, and the Olivine Diabase dyke swarm.
The Shakespeare Deposit is a part of the Shakespeare Intrusion, which are interpreted to be a part of the 2.2 Ga Nipissing Gabbro magmatic event. The Shakespeare Intrusion comprises mineralized rocks with higher Mg and Cr concentrations when compared to other Nipissing Gabbro intrusions. Sutcliffe (2004) demonstrated that an unmineralized quartz diorite from the upper differentiated flank of the Shakespeare Intrusion has an age of 2.2Ga, which is similar to the main Nipissing event and considerably younger than the East Bull Lake event and older than the 1.85Ga Sudbury Igneous Complex.
Geology of the Shakespeare Deposit
Rocks at the Shakespeare Intrusion have historically been broken-out into two units. The Lower Unit, is largely composed of mineralized melagabbrowhich are often massive, variable-textured, pegmatoidal, and/or brecciated. The lower unit has a complex relationship with the Upper Unit which consists dominantly of quartz diorites in contact with the overlying quartzite. Below the melagabbrois a complex 10-50m wide megabreccia comprising 0.5-10m diameter blocks of Nipissing Gabbro separated by a magmatic stockwork of mineralized melagabbroof the type present in the Shakespeare Intrusion. The intrusion has a pipe-like shape with bladed flanks, and belongs to a group of intrusion morphologies that contain nickel sulfide mineralization.
The mineralization at the Shakespeare Deposit comprises mainly pyrrhotite, chalcopyrite and pentlandite with lesser pyrite. The mineralization breaks out into two principal groups based on sulfide texture. A high-grade blebby style of sulfide mineralization is present in the center of the intrusion, and this unit is locally sheared so that the sulfide minerals have segregated to form a network parallel to the orientation of the shear zone. A second lower grade style of mineralization is present as interstitial accumulations between the silicate minerals of the melagabbroas a halo partially surrounding the blebby sulfide mineralization.
The degree of connectivity of the sulfide mineralization is an important control on electrical connectivity, and this controls whether electromagnetic survey methods are able to detect the mineralization. The sheared sulfides and connected primary magmatic sulfides provide electrical connectivity which has been the foundation for exploration work in recent years. The detection of higher-grade mineralization using electromagnetic methods remains a core exploration strategy.
The total strike length of the mineral zone in the Shakespeare Intrusion is approximately 1,700m and it extends from surface to a depth of 550m. Currently the deposit is not closed-off by drilling in any direction, and the extent of exploration in the footwall where the megabreccias are developed is minimal.
Ore Deposit Models for the Shakespeare Intrusion
The exact 3D configuration of the Shakespeare Intrusion, and it’s relationship to the regional stratigraphy of Huronian-aged sedimentary rocks and Nipissing Gabbro Intrusions provides an opportunity for new discovery. The morphology of the Shakespeare Intrusion resembles a differentiated bladed dyke-like conduit, in which magmatic sulfides have segregated and accumulated in blebby and disseminated horizons. The footwall of the Shakespeare Intrusion comprises a megabreccia of barren Nipissing Gabbro impregnated by mineralized melagabbro, and the relationship of these rocks to historic intercepts of mineralization in the footwall is not fully understood. Potential also exists to track the near-surface extension of the Shakespeare Gabbro along strike well beyond the footprint of the known mineral zone.