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New Hanover

The New Hanover project is located on New Hanover 60 km west of the Provincial capital Kavieng in New Ireland Province (Fig 1). Access is by a two-hour boat journey from Kavieng.

New Hanover

Fig 1 - New Hanover project map

The project comprises two exploration licences (EL 1566 & ELA 1856: PPM 100%) covering 591.6 km2 at the northwestern end of the Lihir-Tabar alkaline volcanic belt, host to the giant Lihir gold deposit and the Simberi gold deposit (Fig 2).


Historical exploration on New Hanover. Very little modern exploration has been completed on the New Hanover epithermal systems. CRA Exploration Pty Ltd conducted a broad-scale reconnaissance stream geochemical survey of the island in 1965. Broken Hill Pty Co Ltd conducted a similar programme in 1971, but restricted to the southern part of the island, and made numerous references to the presence of rocks of epithermal origin. Between 1969-1973 geologists from Australia’s Bureau of Mineral Resources and the Geological Survey of PNG mapped the island at 1:250,000 scale. It was during this work that a quartz-pyrite-haematite-zeolite-alunite breccia phase (advanced argillic alteration) was mapped as part of a Late Miocene-Early Pliocene volcanic unit.

Nord Resources (Pacific) Pty Ltd (“Nord Resources”) explored the entire island during a three-year period from June 1985. They completed intensive stream sediment, panned concentrate, float and outcrop sampling across the island. Approximately 370 stream sites were sampled and gold was seen in panned concentrates at 27 sites, mainly restricted to the southern half of the island. Geological mapping outlined the 19 km2 extent of widespread advanced argillic alteration inland from the south coast. Consistently high panned concentrate values focused attention to the ridge-line between the Asmin and Woi Rivers and ridge and spur soil sampling defined a 2 km2 anomaly, now known as the Kuliuta gold-copper prospect. A considerable amount of Nord Resources’ exploration effort was directed towards this prospect.

Nord Resources joint ventured the New Hanover property to the Kennecott-Niugini Mining JV (“KNMJV” or the “Joint Venture”) and detailed bulldozer trenching commenced on the Kuliuta gold-copper prospect during late 1988. Six km of trenching was completed on the Central and Northern Stockwork Zones. A six-hole diamond drilling programme (totalling 705 m and predominantly in NQ-sized core) was completed during May 1989. The KNMJV subsequently withdrew from the New Hanover Joint Venture.

PPM’s New Hanover reconnaissance exploration. PPM’s 2009 exploration of the New Hanover property produced early encouragement. Initial reconnaissance defined 10 geochemical/alteration anomalies for follow-up exploration in addition to the previously located epithermal Kuliuta gold-copper prospect (Fig 1; Table 1). Follow-up of these anomalies, involving detailed 1:1,000 or 1:2,500 geological mapping and sampling, has been completed on Metekavil (Fig 6), Metemana (Fig 7), Ngamin (Fig 8), Elang and Upper Anas. Coarse pannable gold is present in Metemana Creek and anomalous panned concentrate gold anomalies are present across the Upper Anas anomaly. Fieldwork in all five areas has defined extensive (1-2 km2 sized) areas of argillisation (illite-smectite+pyrite grading to illite-sericite+quartz+haematite) that host swarms of grey sulphidic, colloform, crustiform banded epithermal quartz veins. Vein widths up to 3 m have been recorded (at Metemana). Some of these vein swarms are auriferous: Metekavil (3 m @ 1.86 g/t Au) and Upper Anas (one sample 1.71 g/t Au, 36.4 g/t Ag).


The porphyry copper potential of New Hanover has gone unrecognised by previous explorers. This is despite the presence of extensive zones of advanced argillic alteration (covering a 19 km2 area) immediately inland from the south coast. Advanced argillic alteration consists of both massive and brecciated zones of alunite+silica+kaolinite+ sulphide. The presence of alkaline porphyry style gold-copper mineralisation on the nearby Tabar island group has recently been demonstrated during recent competitor’s drilling at the Banesa and Tupinda prospects on Big Tabar Island.


Numerous porphyry-style signature have been noted during PPM’s fieldwork in EL 1566. The Company’s drilling at Kuliuta has attracted mineral industry interest for its unusual intersection of a native and sulphide copper-bearing sub-volcanic hosted porphyry to depths of ~500m below La’mau’sing Mountain. PPM’s reconnaissance exploration has located 9.67% copper in an outcrop in Metemana Creek, 5 km southwest of Kuliuta (Fig. 1), and detailed fieldwork during 2011 at Elang and Metewoi has expanded to four the number of porphyry copper plays in the New Hanover project. Grid soil sampling and detailed mapping covering extensive (~6 km2) areas at both Elang and Metewoi is recently complete and results are being compiled. The Company intends to advance both prospects to drill targets by mid-2012.


Fig 2 - Lihir-Tabar gold mineral belt


Fig 4 - Kuliuta gold-copper prospect – 1,400 m x 600 m gold (>0.1 g/t Au) soil anomaly. Grid is 3.2 km long.

Metekavil gold prospect

Fig 6 - Metekavil gold prospect – geology and alteration

Ngamin gold prospect

Fig 8 – Ngamin gold prospect – geology and alteration


Fig 3 - Kuliuta gold-copper prospect. Plan of KNMJV trenches showing trench intercepts >0.1 g/t Au. Drillhole locations are also shown. Trenching was confined to the axis and immediate flanks of the northwest trending Kuliuta ridge and failed to fully cover all areas of soil anomaly.

Metekavil gold prospect

Fig 5 - Kuliuta gold-copper prospect - PPM trench sampling results and gold in soil anomaly

Metemana gold-copper prospect

Fig 7 - Metemana gold-copper prospect - geology and alteration

Metemana gold-copper prospect

Fig 9 - Kuliuta gold-copper prospect - Detail of La'mau'sing or Zone A showing high grade trench results, gold in soil anomalies along Line 16 and results of recent selective grab sampling

Fig 11 - Elang Creek geophysical and geochemical anomaly, showing strong near surface magnetic anomaly, interpreted to be an intrusive body unlike any other in the New Hanover tenement. It is associated with silica-alunite breccias, gold anomaly in panned concentrate and copper anomalies in outcrop

Fig 13 - Kuliuta gold-copper prospect - Drillhole KUD007: Native copper present in drillcore (near centre of drillcore sample) at 123.80m downhole. The widespread downhole presence of porphyry style native copper occurrence in hole KUD007 as disseminations, void infillings and rimming clasts is considered unusual.

Fig 15 - Kuliuta gold-copper prospect - Drillhole KUD008: Fracture coatings of native copper at 89.66m downhole, hosted in an augite porphyryitic latite.

Fig 17 - Kuliuta gold-copper prospect - La'mau'sing Mountain copper target showing placement of PPM drillholes.

Fig 19 - Kuliuta gold-copper prospect - Drillhole KUD009: Native copper from 74.50m in argillised porphyritic latite. Specimen collected after sampling of core shown in Fig 18.

Ngamin gold prospect

Fig 10 - Kuliuta gold-copper prospect - Radiogenic thorium anomaly associated with the the Kuliuta gold prospect. Gold in soil anomaly is shown by coloured balls along soil grid lines. Thorium anomaly may indicate the presence of a porphyry intrusion below the prospect. Thorium anomaly is associated with other PNG porphyry copper deposits. Thorium data from PPM's recently completed Fugro Airborne Surveys geophysical programme

Ngamin gold prospect

Fig 12 - Kuliuta gold-copper prospect - Drillhole location plan in the La'mau'sing area, showing large 400m x 300m chargeability anomaly (mid and dark blue).

Ngamin gold prospect

Fig 14 - Kuliuta gold-copper prospect - Proposed closed-spaced step out drilling plan to investigate copper mineralisation in the La'mau'sing zone - Resistivity image at 150m depth.

Ngamin gold prospect

Fig 16 - Kuliuta gold-copper prospect - Drillhole KUD008: Fracture coatings of native copper at 89.68m downhole, hosted in an augite porphyryitic latite.


Fig 18 - Kuliuta gold-copper prospect - Drillhole KUD009: Native copper 'seam' in interval 74.50 to 74.60m interval in argillised porphyritic latite.






Baungung River catchment

4 km2

Panned concentrate sample 30145 contained 0.51 ppm Au (105 µg Au). This panned concentrate result is very high.

Upper Vuemolong

Nawngai Creek, a tributary of upper Vuemolong Creek

3 km2

  1. Several float samples along the lower-middle Vuemolong Creek contain anomalous Au: 30141 – 1.48 g/t Au; 30146 – 0.40 g/t Au; 30156 – 0.13 g/t Au.
  2. Altered float is present on the ridges between Vuemolong Creek and Nawngai Creek


Centred on Metekavil Creek

6 km2

  1. The area is defined by extensive quartz-sulphide-vuggy silica-alunite alteration and intense argillisation.
  2. Long intervals of argillisation (2 km) are present along Metekavil Creek.
  3. 2 m chip sample of this argillisation (30115) returned 1.72 g/t Au.
  4. Other float samples returned anomalous Au values: 30075 – 0.10 g/t Au; 30086 – 0.23 g/t Au; 30097 – 0.53 g/t Au
  5. Panned concentrate 30104 from a headwater tributary of the Metekavil contained 10 µg Au.
  6. Note that a rock float from Meteingia Creek (to the west) contained 0.11 g/t Au. Both Meteingia and Metekavil Creek share a common watershed.


Centred on Metamana Creek and adjacent to Metekavil anomaly. Both are probably contiguous

2 km2

  1. Panned concentrate 30093 returned an extremely high result of 2.11 ppm Au (260 µg Au). The concentrate contained a single wire gold about 2-3 mm size, indicating little stream transport and proximity of Au source.
  2. Float sample 30092 contained 0.133 g/t Au. 

Upper Ungat

Upper reaches of Ungat River, including Lamakirak tributary

2 km2

  1. Both panned concentrates from Ungat River (30023 – 30 µg Au) and Lamikirak tributary (30024 – 15 µg Au) contain anomalous assay detectable Au. Samples were obtained from excellent trapsites.
  2. Exposures of ashflow tuff in the gently meandering Lamakirak and sago swamps are orange clay. The clay rocks have been interpreted as a deep weathering, as a result of trace sulphide in tuffs, but this view may need reassessment.

Upper Saula

Middle and ?upper reaches of the Saula and Sai Rivers

16 km2

  1. Successive panned concentrates along the large Saula River contain Au anomalies: 30008 – 20 µg Au; 30010 – 10 µg Au; 30067 – 25 µg Au.
  2. Altered, quartz veined float common in Sia River; one sample contained 1.54 g/t Au.
  3. Intense and detailed exploration sampling by Nord in the Saula headwaters.


Immediately behind Catholic Mission, Lavongai

1 km2

  1. At transition from argillised and veined rocks to adjacent/overlying silica breccia/advanced argillic alteration.
  2. Outcrop samples contain anomalous Au: 30239 – 0.15 g/t Au; 30252 – 0.18 g/t Au; 30253 – 0.17 g/t Au.


Western tributary of Anas River near Nusavung

2.5 km2

  1. Series of panned concentrates from Elang and tributaries with anomalous Au: 30168 - 55 µg Au; 30178 - 30 µg Au; 30180 - µg Au.
  2. Rock outcrop with anomalous Au: 30177 - 0.14 g/t Au.
  3. Rock float with anomalous Au: 30167 – 0.10 g/t Au.
  4. Abundant boulders of vuggy silica-?alunite along ridgelines.

Upper Anas

Headwater tributaries of Anas River and across watershed with Taimo River; Mina tributary

12.75 km2

  1. Headwater tributaries of Anas all contain high panned concentrate anomalies: Tulvas- 30195 - 45 µg Au; Anas - 30193 - 135 µg Au; Rautas - 30191 - 20 µg Au.
  2. Mina tributary has high panned concentrate Au: 30188 – 60 µg Au; 30187 – 40 µg Au.
  3. Anomalous panned concentrate Au in headwaters of Taimo : 30210 – 10 µg Au.
  4. Strongly argillised porphyritic lava and volcanic breccia with limonite stockworking in Anas headwaters (Rautas)


Gamagama and Tamang Creeks, tributaries of upper Taimo River

3 km2

  1. Anomalous panned concentrate Au in both tributaries and upper Taimo: 30220 – 20 µg Au; 30202 – 110 µg (1.17 ppm Au) Au; 30205 – 35 µg Au (1.67 ppm Au).
  2. Quartz-sericite-pyrite altered volcanics in Tamang Creek.

Geochemical thresholds:
Panned concentrates – 0.1 ppm Au or 10 µg contained Au
Rocks – 0.10 ppm Au; 1,000 ppm Cu; 50 ppm As; 10 ppm Sb

Table 1 - PPM’s New Hanover geological and geochemical anomalies. Anomalies are listed west to east across tenement EL 1566.






24 m




36 m

27 m @ 3.58 g/t Au
incl. 12 m @ 7.64 g/t Au
incl. 3 m @ 23.43 g/t Au

30 m @ 1.25 g/t Au


63 m

63 m @ 0.64 g/t Au (open ended)
incl. 9 m @ 1.49 g/t Au
3 m @ 1.33 g/t Au
3 m @ 1.52 g/t Au

30 m @ 1.11 g/t Au

La’mau’sing area

33 m

33 m @ 0.90 g/t Au (open ended)
incl. 6 m @ 1.83 g/t Au
3 m @ 3.05 g/t Au

20 m @ 2.46 g/t Au


9 m


10 m @ 3.4 g/t Au


27 m

6 m @ 0.26 g/t Au
9 m @ 0.18 g/t Au



15 m

3 m @ 0.22 g/t Au



21 m

18 m @ 0.30 g/t Au

10 m @ 1.99 g/t Au


12 m

12 m @ 0.39 g/t Au



54 m

15 m @ 0.24 g/t Au
3 m @ 0.25 g/t Au
27 m @ 0.46 g/t Au
incl. 9 m @ 1.03 g/t Au

50 m @ 0.61 g/t Au


27 m

3 m @ 0.17 g/t Au


La’mau’sing area

51 m

51 m @ 0.90 g/t Au (open ended)
incl. 6 m @ 2.08 g/t Au
3 m @ 1.07 g/t Au
9 m @ 1.56 g/t Au

30 m @ 0.59 g/t Au

La’mau’sing area

45 m

39 m @ 3.89 g/t Au
incl. 21 m @ 6.54 g/t Au
incl. 3 m @ 31.64 g/t Au

30 m @ 4.1 g/t Au

La’mau’sing area

24 m

24 m @ 0.55 g/t Au
incl. 3 m @ 1.52 g/t Au

10 m @ 1.0 g/t Au


12 m

12 m @ 0.49 g/t Au
incl. 3 m @ 1.34 g/t Au



42 m

9 m @ 0.36 g/t Au
3 m @ 0.18 g/t Au
6 m @ 0.50 g/t Au
3 m @ 0.30 g/t Au
3 m @ 8.54 g/t Au

0.2 m @ 28 g/t Au

Cutoff - 0.10 g/t Au; NSR – No significant results

Table 2: Kuliuta gold-copper prospect – PPM and Kennecott trench results


Interval (m)

Intersection and grade (g/t) Cutoff 0.5 g/t Au



65.0-85.0 m

20.0 m @ 1.48 g/t Au

Northern Stockwork Zone


64.0-74.0 m

10.0 m @ 1.15 g/t Au

81.0-85.0 m

4.0 m @ 3.75 g/t Au


7.0-8.0 m

1.0 m @ 6.75 g/t Au

26.0-32.0 m

6.0 m  @ 1.08 g/t Au

44.0-47.0 m

3.0 m @ 1.0 g/t Au

52.0-53.0 m

1.0 m @ 3.47 g/t Au

62.0-67.0 m

5.0 m @ 1.13 g/t Au

125.0-126.0 m

1.0 m @ 2.80 g/t Au

142.0-143.0 m

1.0 m @ 3.00 g/t Au


41.0-43.0 m

2.0 m @ 1.68 g/t Au

Central Stockwork Zone


33.0-37.0 m

4.0 m @ 3.84 g/t Au

Table 3 - Kuliuta gold-copper prospect – Summary of KNMJV’s drillhole results