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Located in Rio Grande do Sul, the southernmost state of Brazil, Aguia’s Metallic Copper Project is expected to have a low-cost base due to:

1. The sourcing of materials & equipment locally in Brazil; and

2. The fact that we have chalcocite as the ore-mineral, which is amenable to heap leaching, one of the cheapest ways of extracting copper.

We are currently evaluating alternative and environmentally sustainable but proven methods of heap leaching.

A Measured and Indicated Resource Statement was released on 9 February 2023 (ASX announcement), and a Pre-Feasibility Study (PFS) is expected to be released soon. The Environmental planning stage has already commenced, with the stakeholder engagement survey underway.


The mine will be constructed near a town of about 35,000 people in the State of Rio Grande do Sul. The town has a university which teaches mining engineering and geology. It is located about 255 km from Port Alegre, the State Capital. The metallic copper will be sent to the coast to the Port of Rio Grande, one of the largest and deepest ports in all of South America. The copper project is located about 60 km from our future phosphate mine.


We refer to our asset region as the Rio Grande Copper Belt, but in reality, the region is prolific in mineral wealth.

Although technologies are brilliant at locating mineral assets, it still helps to understand a little of their genesis deep in the earth hundreds of millions of years ago. Why do particular areas of the world contain rich mineral deposits? Aguia’s copper resource was formed half a billion years ago when South America was still joined to Africa. This ancient land mass is known as Gondwana. It’s where you find the renowned Kalahari Copper Belt, which has hosted prolific copper output for over 60 years.

Geological studies have revealed unique and striking similarities between the geology of the Kalahari with that of southern Brazil, in particular with that of the Rio Grande Copper Belt. The general consensus is that in all likelihood Rio Grande was the western portion and Kalahari was the eastern portion of the same copper belt before the opening of the South Atlantic ocean, which separated South America from Africa. This view is shared by Aguia’s geological team and this together with other observations and assessments has led to Aguia staking extensive copper tenement holdings in the Rio Grande Copper Belt.

The wealth which gold discoveries brought in the 19th century remains visible in the region’s towns. Recently the TSX-listed Lavras Gold announced a gold resource of 1,000,000 oz located near to Aguia’s tenements. There are many limestone mines currently in operation, and the region still hosts some significant coal mines. The renowned Camaqua copper mine, which is close to our project site, was mined in the region for over 100 years. Not to mention that Aguia itself has a JORC-compliant Resource of 105 Mt of phosphate in the region.

The region has not attracted investment in recent times, losing out to northern and central Brazil, but that is changing.

Tunnel at Andrade ridge. The photo was taken by the Australian team in 2019.


  • No further high-cost drilling is required for this asset.
  • Provides certainty in relation to the copper resource;
  • Indicates an economically viable copper mine building on the Copper Scoping Study

A final Resource Statement was released to the market on 9th February 2023.

Full ASX announcement


A Pre- Feasibility Study is now being prepared, which will provide revised economics for the project. This will be released to the market once completed.

To read the 9 March 2021 Copper Scoping Study click here.


Copper is a commodity likely to be in high demand for the foreseeable future. The copper needed for car components will rise to 6 million tonnes per annum by 2040, which is an increase of 143 per cent from 2020.
Source: IDTechEx research commissioned by the International Copper Association.
A significant driver for copper demand comes from the Glasgow Declaration which has 100 signatories who have agreed to support an accelerated transition to zero-emission vehicles between 2035 and 2040. The signatories include 31 countries as well as subnational governments, vehicle manufacturers, major fleets and investors and financial institutions.
In addition there is a continuing demand for copper in industry and a growing demand for copper required for the electrification of the developing world.

Source: Indexmundi -Platts Metals Week, Engineering and Mining Journal; Thomson Reuters Datastream; World Bank.


Chalcocite Ore

The outstanding characteristic of Aguia’s Copper Project is that it contains chalcocite as the dominant copper species, which is relatively uncommon. Chalcocite Ore allows the copper to be separated from the ore by heap leaching, which is a relatively cheap form of copper extraction. Traditionally acid was used for heap leaching, but now alternative sustainable technologies have been developed or are in the development stage.

Aguia is currently evaluating technologies to determine a proven and environmentally sustainable method of copper extraction.


The first stage of Stakeholder Engagement has already begun.


Understanding the region’s potential connection to the Kalahari Belt, it’s mineral wealth, and the geological experience and expertise of our long-standing team, it is not surprising to find that Aguia holds significant copper assets in close proximity, which it has been building since 2018. They include:

  • 1,550 sq kilometres copper tenements; and
  • 11 satellite copper targets

Aguia proposes to selectively drill these targets over time, initially using some of its phosphate profits. A full description of each target is set out below.

1. Primavera

  • Viewed as Aguia’s second target as it is only 3.8 km to the south of Andrade.
  • The asset was mapped during 2019 and had its historical trenches resampled with results returning up to 52 metres grading 1.03% Cu and 6.20 g/t Ag as well as 11 metres grading 1.16% Cu and 25.16 g/t Ag.

2. Carlotta

  • Located on the eastern edge of the Caçapava Granite target area.
  • Rock and soil sampling identified anomalous zones of elevated copper and gold, including visible free gold. A gold-in-soils anomaly measuring over 500 metres in length with rock chip samples up to 1.63% Cu and 48 g/t Au and 0.16% Cu and 13.4 g/t Au were taken. Eight channels were sampled over 1-metre intervals for a total of 170 samples, and grades of up to 29.8 g/t Au were returned. Further to the north, one individual grab rock sample returned 0.16% Cu and 13.4% g/t Au.
  • An IP survey totalling about 12 -line km has been completed over the target to follow up on the significant copper and gold-in-soils anomalies. It mapped a prominent chargeability anomaly that merits further drilling.
  • An anomaly in excess of 600 metres emerged from the IP modelling and appears to indicate a structurally controlled zone plunging to the south.

3. Seival

  • Located approximately 25 km southwest of Andrade.
  • Interpreted to be associated with the same structural corridor (a major fault) that controlled the Andrade and Primavera trend.
  • Two major NNE trending regional faults cross the target. Both are mapped to extend northwards, where they narrow and pass through the Andrade Copper Sulphate Project. A possible copper extension is indicated to the south of the target.
  • Initial rock sampling included a sample that returned 2.30% Cu in volcanic rock.

4. Passo Feio

  • Located approximately 16 km southeast of Andrade.
  • The target was selected because of a large (16km2) low-magnetic airborne geophysical anomaly interpreted to be related to the hydrothermal oxidation of magnetite to hematite. Further field follow-up resulted in the identification of many copper showings hosted by heavily fractured volcanic rocks, which is very similar to what is seen at the Canhada target. Sampling has returned 1.55% Cu and 2.10% Cu in different rock types. Grab samples of sandstone outcrops have returned up to 2.30% Cu.
  • Six trenches have been opened (within the coarse conglomerate layer) to follow-up on rock sample results.
  • The target is predominately located in undulating pastureland and geophysics is planned to define potential drill locations.

5. Big Ranch

  • Located approximately 18km northwest of Andrade, immediately north of the Caçapava Granite target area.
  • The target consists of several copper-in-soils anomalies associated to a strong IP chargeability anomaly in the northern portion of the target.
  • Ten dipole-dipole radial lines were surveyed along the target and guided the first pass exploration drilling that was completed in late 2018.
  • Drilling was used to map the different alteration zones and to test the bulk of the ring-shaped IP chargeability anomaly that was revealed to be primarily associated with iron sulphide minerals (such as pyrite).
  • Minor copper and lead sulphides were intercepted by drilling but so far in very narrow zones.
  • Further drilling is necessary to test second-scale east-west trending IP anomalies.

6. Canhada

  • Located approximately 55 km southwest of Andrade in gently undulating farmland (adjacent to a road with power).
  • The target has historical rock samples with copper assays of over 4%.
  • The anomaly is 27km2 in size and measures approximately 9km by 3km.
  • The copper minerals occur in veins crosscutting highly fractured volcanic rock and is often weathered to malachite from the original primary copper minerals.
  • Airborne geophysics shows the target as a magnetic low, potentially associated to hydrothermal alteration of magnetite to hematite.
  • Ground geophysics (dipole-dipole) in the northeast of the target has mapped an anomalous zone from near surface down to 200 metres deep that may be associated with copper mineralization. 13 drill holes have been planned to test this anomalous zone.

7. Lagoa Parada

  • Lagoa Parada target is located 10km southeast of the city of Lavras.
  • Airborne geophysics show a very discrete bullseye circular magnetic anomaly with a radius of 3km and copper showing occurring along the border of this anomaly as disseminations in the matrix of the sandstone and filling fractures.
  • Initial reconnaissance and geological mapping returned a rock assay of up to 4.22% copper and over-limited silver (>100g/t silver).

8. Salso

  • The Salso Target is located 12km to the northwest of the Andrade Project.
  • Initial geological mapping shows that the Salso Target is associated with a contact between volcanic rhyolitic rock with a sedimentary sequence, represented by rhythmites and sandstones.
  • The copper is occurring as disseminations in the matrix of the rhythmite and filling the foliation plans and also occurs in association with quartz veins in the geological contact zone. The main copper mineral is malachite reflecting the weathering at surface, some chalcocite was also found.
  • Initial reconnaissance and geological mapping returned a rock assay of up to 2.67% copper and 27.1g/t silver.

9. Piquiri

  • The Piquiri Target is located 60km to the east of the city of Caçapava do Sul and comprises an area covered by six tenements where volcanic and sedimentary rocks outcrop in contact with granite, which is a geological environment similar to that found at the Andrade Deposit.
  • Copper mineralisation occurs in both sedimentary and volcanic rocks, predominantly in shales along the strike over 2.5km. The main copper mineral is malachite occurring as disseminations in the matrix of the volcanic rocks and filling the foliation plans of the shales.
  • Initial reconnaissance and geological mapping returned a rock assay of up to 1.08% copper.

10. Estuque

  • The Estuque target is located 33km northwest of the Andrade Project and comprises an area with outcrops and historical gold exploration works, such as trenches and shafts, along a 1km strikelength.
  • The host rock is a silicified granite, occurring in the border of the main intrusive structure. The mineralisation is associated with a radial structure in the border of this zone and the gold is bearing in sheeted vein structures. Sheeted vein is a hydrothermal structure typical of gold deposits associated to nearby intrusive rocks formed by a set of parallel gold-bearing quartz veins separated from each other by the country rock.
  • Initial results from rock samples of this rock type returned up to 2.68 g/t gold.

11. Cota

  • The Cota target is located 35km southwest of the Andrade Project.
  • Initial results from rock samples of this rock type returned up to 3.72% Copper for the Cota target.

See below for images taken from all of Aguia’s 11 targets. 


Copper Acquisition 2019

In February 2019, Aguia signed an option agreement to purchase the copper claims from a private Brazilian company, Referencial Geologia. In March 2019, Aguia issued a JORC-compliant Copper Resource Statement. The Statement was based on the results of 38 diamond drill holes previously drilled by Referencial Geologia between 2009 and 2010. The results were subsequently compiled into Aguia’s database.

Aguia then undertook extensive exploration campaigns that included:

  • A surface mapping program;
  • The reprocessing of a historical airborne geophysical data package;
  • A ground geophysical survey (Induced Polarisation and Magnetometry);
  • A petrographic study; and
  • The mapping and re-sampling of 18 historical trenches.

Our Copper Project’s drilling database by the end of 2019 included:

  • Detailed logging and geochemistry from 48 diamond drill holes totalling 8,986 metres;
  • 23 historical trenches that were re-sampled, totalling 1,646 metres; & 10,074 assay records.

Drilling 2020

In early 2020 two diamond drill holes confirmed the north and south high-grade copper zone within the existing mineral resource area. As a result of these 2 drills holes, a Copper Scoping Study was released in March 2021, which included a resource update with an Indicated Resource of 18.03 Mt at 0.41% Cu and1.87g/t Ag and an Inferred Resource of 3.98 Mt at 0.53% Cu and 2.06g/t Ag.

Infill Drilling 2022

This entire infill drilling program comprised 25 drill holes totalling 2,646 metres and was undertaken in 2022. The goal was to take Aguia’s Copper Resource to a Measured and Indicated with the certainty required to move the project to a Pre-Feasiblity Statement and to begin the Environmental Permitting Process. This was achieved.

The final Measured and Indicated Resource Statement was issued in February 2023- see details above. No further drilling is necessary as we now have strong copper project economics. And we can proceed with the permitting of Aguia’s metallic copper mine.