Arizona Sonoran Drilling Extends Primary Mineralization by 750 ft (229 m) around the Cactus West Pit

June 10, 2024

Casa Grande, AZ and Toronto, ON, June 10, 2024 – Arizona Sonoran Copper Company Inc. (TSX:ASCU | OTCQX:ASCUF) (“ASCU” or the “Company”) reports drilling results targeting below the leachable oxides and enriched sulphides, into the untested extents of primary copper mineralization around the Cactus West Pit, on the Cactus Project, in Arizona. Drilling confirms a thick zone of primary sulphide mineralization beneath the Cactus West open pit mine plan and at least 750 ft (229 m) south, 500 ft (152 m) southwest and up to an additional 700 ft (213 m) below the Cactus West mineral resource shell (see FIGURES 1-8). The program is part of the 2024 Nuton Work Program sponsored by Nuton LLC, a Rio Tinto venture, as announced January 30, 2024.

A total of 5 drill holes are reported herein for a total of 8,366 ft (2,550 m). The Nuton-sponsored drill program aims to further delineate the primary mineralization beneath the existing oxides and enriched sulphides at the Cactus West open pit, as outlined in the current mine plan. Additionally, the program seeks to extend exploration efforts to the south and southwest regions. The program follows up on geotechnical hole ECW-150 (see PR January 10, 2024), which also encountered a significant primary sulphide interval, extending mineralization by 674 ft (205 m) below the mineral resource shell, within a total interval of 1,416 ft (432 m) @ 0.45% CuT.

Drilling Highlights

  • ECW-246*: 1,463 ft (446 m) @ 0.31% CuT of continuous mineralization
    • 1,370 ft (418 m) @ 0.31% CuT, 0.004% Mo (primary)
  • ECW-243: 987 ft (301 m) @ 0.34% CuT of continuous mineralization
    • 191 ft (58 m) @ 0.35% CuT, 0.30% Cu TSol, 0.014% Mo (enriched)
    • 796 ft (243 m) @ 0.33% CuT, 0.011% Mo (primary)
  • ECW-245: 1,033 ft (315 m) @ 0.28% CuT of continuous mineralization
    • 190 ft (58 m) @ 0.56% CuT, 0.010% Mo (primary)
  • ECW-241: 852 ft (260 m) @ 0.38% CuT of continuous mineralization
    • 316 ft (96 m) @ 0.34% CuT, 0.27% Cu TSol, 0.005% Mo (enriched) from 132 m depth
    • 536 ft (163 m) @ 0.39% CuT, 0.019% Mo (primary) 

NOTE: True widths are not known; * Hole terminated in primary mineralization and angled at –47.5° dip, all other holes drilled vertical and terminated in the basement fault

George Ogilvie, Arizona Sonoran President and CEO commented, “While our engineering and geology teams remain focused on the integration of our MainSpring property into our February 2024 Pre-Feasibility Study, our geo teams continue their exemplary low discovery cost programs. To date, the discovery cost on our Cactus porphyry is under $0.01/lb, and therefore telling us to continue drilling until that cost begins to increase.”

He continued, “The Cactus 2024 drilling programs focused on MainSpring infill drilling and expansion drilling at Cactus West. MainSpring presents engineering with the opportunity to improve economics at Parks/Salyer. At Cactus West, the team is targeting below the previously known mineral extents within the primary sulphides for future opportunities and optionality. Cactus infill drilling is returning wide intervals of primary copper mineralization both below the open pit mine plan, and also outside of the current mineral resource shell. While these Cactus West results will not be included in the pending Preliminary Economic Assessment, we see an expanding primary sulphide zone as future optionality on what is already one of the largest development stage Copper assets in the United States today.”

Drilling Recap

The Cactus West infill and exploration drill program as announced in the January 30, 2024 work plan press release and as part of the 2024 Nuton Work Program, supports the expansion of primary sulphide mineralization, particularly near ECW-150 and is ongoing with two drills. The current drilling will not be reflected in the pending Preliminary Economic Assessment. 

Previously, most drilling at Cactus West crossed through the oxide and enriched zones prior to terminating in the upper portions of the primary sulphide mineralization. This developed the oxide and enriched copper resources to support a conventional heap leach project. The current drill program at Cactus West targets the untested extents of primary mineralization by drilling completely through the enriched and primary mineralization zones to the basement fault and stopping in the rock units that compose the basement complex. This drilling is confirming a thick zone of primary mineralization beneath the thinner enrichment zone, typically followed by a barren granitic unit at depth above the basement fault. Though the drill program is in the early stages, it has confirmed that a thick zone of primary mineralization extends beneath the Cactus West pit as well as at least 750 feet south and 500 feet southwest of the pit. Results to date show primary sulphide copper grade increasing from east to west across the southern side of the pit. Grades are interpreted to increase further on the southwest corner of the pit as the drilling aligns with the historical mine trend, consistent with results previously reported from ECW-150. The program will continue to test the extents of primary mineralization to the south and southwest, as it also works to in-fill the areas under and immediately adjacent to the Cactus West pit.

The oxide and enriched proven and probable reserve at Cactus West totals 75.5 Mtons @ 0.26% Cu TSol for 463 Mlbs of copper. Within the Pre-Feasibility Study, Cactus West contributes approximately 12 Mtons annually within the first 7 years of production as an open pit layback. Meanwhile, the Cactus West and East  primary sulphide mineral resource estimate consists of 72.9 Mtons @ 0.34% CuT M&I for 463M lbs of copper and 120.4 Mtons @ 0.34% CuT for 837 Mlbs of copper inferred, inclusive of Cactus East (see PR dated February 21, 2024for notes and disclaimers related to the reserves and resources). The Cactus Project overall, inclusive of Parks/Salyer, contains 446 Mtons @ 0.58% CuT for 5.2 Blbs measured and indicated and 224 Mtons @ 0.472% CuT for 2.2 Blbs inferred.

Table 1: Significant Drilling Intercepts

  1. Intervals are presented in core length and are drilled vertically, except in the case of ECW-246 at –47.5°.
  2. Drill assays assume a mineralized cut-off grade of 0.1% CuT reflecting the potential for heap leaching of open pit material in the case of Oxide and Enriched or in the case of Primary material to provide typical average grades. Holes were terminated below the basement fault except in the case of hole ECW-246.
  3.  Assay results are not capped. Intercepts are aggregated within geological confines of major mineral zones.
  4. * Includes 10.3 ft (3.2 m) of missing core
  5. True widths are not known

Table 2: Drilling Details

Note: Drill locations are based on drill plans and hand-held GPS locators and may be adjusted slightly when properly surveyed.

Quality Assurance / Quality Control 

Drilling completed on the project between 2020 and 2023 was supervised by on-site ASCU personnel who prepared core samples for assay and implemented a full QA/QC program using blanks, standards, and duplicates to monitor analytical accuracy and precision. The samples were sealed on site and shipped to Skyline Laboratories in Tucson AZ for analysis. Skyline’s sample prep, analytical methodologies, and quality control system complies with global certifications for Quality ISO9001:2008. 

Technical aspects of this news release have been reviewed and verified by Allan Schappert – CPG #11758, who is a qualified person as defined by National Instrument 43-101– Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects.

Links from the Press Release

Figures 1-8: 
February 21, 2024: 
January 30, 2024: 
January 10, 2024:

Neither the TSX nor the regulating authority has approved or disproved the information contained in this press release.

About Arizona Sonoran Copper Company ( |

ASCU’s objective is to become a mid-tier copper producer with low operating costs and to develop the Cactus and Parks/Salyer Projects that could generate robust returns for investors and provide a long term sustainable and responsible operation for the community and all stakeholders. The Company’s principal asset is a 100% interest in the Cactus Project (former ASARCO, Sacaton mine) which is situated on private land in an infrastructure-rich area of Arizona. Contiguous to the Cactus Project is the Company’s 100%-owned Parks/Salyer deposit that could allow for a phased expansion of the Cactus Mine once it becomes a producing asset. The Company is led by an executive management team and Board which have a long-standing track record of successful project delivery in North America complemented by global capital markets expertise.

For more information

Alison Dwoskin, Director, Investor Relations 

George Ogilvie, President, CEO and Director 

Forward-Looking Statements

Forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause the actual results, performance or achievements of ASCU to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements. Factors that could affect the outcome include, among others: future prices and the supply of metals; the results of drilling; inability to raise the money necessary to incur the expenditures required to retain and advance the properties; environmental liabilities (known and unknown); general business, economic, competitive, political and social uncertainties; results of exploration programs; accidents, labour disputes and other risks of the mining industry; political instability, terrorism, insurrection or war; or delays in obtaining governmental approvals, projected cash operating costs, failure to obtain regulatory or shareholder approvals. 

Although ASCU has attempted to identify important factors that could cause actual actions, events or results to differ materially from those described in forward-looking statements, there may be other factors that cause actions, events or results to differ from those anticipated, estimated or intended. Forward-looking statements contained herein are made as of the date of this news release and ASCU disclaims any obligation to update any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or results or otherwise, except as required by applicable securities laws.