Nautilus Minerals Inc.
AIM : NUS
TSX : NUS

Nautilus Minerals Inc.

February 25, 2010 14:27 ET

Nautilus Confirms Recent SMS Discoveries in Papua New Guinea with Assays

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Feb. 25, 2010) - Nautilus Minerals Inc. (TSX:NUS)(AIM:NUS) (the "Company" or "Nautilus") is pleased to announce laboratory assay results for the previously announced discoveries from the MV Fugro Solstice cruise in the Bismarck Sea, Papua New Guinea. The assay results confirm high grade sulphide mineralisation at Solwara 14, 16 and 18. With Solwara 12 and 13, a total of five high grade SMS discoveries were made in 2009 and the mineralisation at Solwara 11 was extended. The 2009 work also generated many other targets and anomalies for follow-up in future exploration campaigns.

The discovery results, were previously released on January 14, 2010 (reported from results obtained from handheld x-ray fluorescence ("XRF") data) collected on-board the exploration vessel.

Stephen Rogers, Nautilus' CEO, commented: "Work is ongoing to evaluate and rank the Bismarck systems in preparation for a proposed drilling campaign. The drilling campaign is being designed to increase our resource at Solwara 1 and elsewhere in the Bismarck Sea."

This link (http://www.nautilusminerals.com/i/misc/Figure1_DiscoveryLocationMap.pdf) shows the location of the SMS discoveries within the Bismarck Sea. Tables 1 to 4 provide the final assay results for Solwara 11i, 14, 16 and 18 respectively, which update the previously reported XRF results.

Table 1: Solwara 11i Final Assay Results of Sulphide Samples

      Final assay result        
Sample No Sample Type Weight (g) Cu % Zn % Pb % Au g/t Ag g/t Easting2 Northing2 Depth2 Lithology
22622 CHIMNEY-ROV 2150 0.677 52.000 0.366 2.18 133 520503 9650798 -1457 Massive Sulphide
22623 CHIMNEY-ROV 3160 0.692 25.400 0.453 0.98 90 520476 9650740 -1458 Massive Sulphide
    Minimum 0.677 25.400 0.366 0.98 90        
    Maximum 0.692 52.000 0.453 2.18 133        
    Average 0.685 38.700 0.410 1.58 112        
  1. Results received from ALS Laboratory
  2. Coordinates projected as UTM zone 55 south using a WGS 1984 datum

Table 2: Solwara 14 Final Assay Results of Sulphide Samples

      Final assay result        
Sample No Sample Type Weight (g) Cu % Zn % Pb % Au g/t Ag g/t Easting2 Northing2 Depth2 Lithology
22583 CHIMNEY-ROV 1000 0.462 11.450 0.029 3.19 57 177326 9633105 -2238 Massive Sulphide
22585 CHIMNEY-ROV 2100 0.077 3.220 0.039 2.60 29 177328 9633098 -2237 Massive Sulphide
22586 CHIMNEY-ROV 4620 7.010 8.690 0.015 1.33 64 177072 9633120 -2244 Massive Sulphide
22587 CHIMNEY-ROV 2670 0.543 11.550 0.028 2.35 58 177390 9633178 -2243 Massive Sulphide
22588 CHIMNEY-ROV 3065 0.947 9.260 0.023 2.55 53 177401 9633220 -2243 Massive Sulphide
22590 CHIMNEY-ROV 3245 0.432 11.400 0.024 2.55 52 177359 9633168 -2246 Massive Sulphide
22591 CHIMNEY-ROV 5097 0.714 30.200 0.026 5.67 132 177337 9633144 -2242 Massive Sulphide
22592 CHIMNEY-ROV 3966 0.211 14.900 0.032 3.72 80 177331 9633122 -2238 Massive Sulphide
22594 CHIMNEY-ROV 1102 1.300 31.200 0.021 1.33 96 177057 9633141 -2242 Massive Sulphide
22595 CHIMNEY-ROV 4895 1.590 17.950 0.027 4.40 184 177063 9633142 -2240 Massive Sulphide
22597 CHIMNEY-ROV 6175 4.920 10.300 0.015 1.10 48 177046 9633088 -2244 Massive Sulphide
22598 CHIMNEY-ROV 2870 0.356 27.400 0.107 6.28 165 177015 9633059 -2247 Massive Sulphide
22599 CHIMNEY-ROV 5038 0.226 40.100 0.080 3.77 169 176995 9633034 -2244 Massive Sulphide
22601 CHIMNEY-ROV 5209 0.798 41.100 0.083 5.67 166 177082 9633170 -2248 Massive Sulphide
    Minimum 0.077 3.220 0.015 1.10 29        
    Maximum 7.010 41.100 0.107 6.28 184        
    Average 1.399 19.194 0.039 3.32 97        

Table 3: Solwara 16 Final Assay Results of Sulphide Samples

      Final assay result        
Sample No Sample Type Weight (g) Cu % Zn % Pb % Au g/t Ag g/t Easting2 Northing2 Depth2 Lithology
22602 CHIMNEY-ROV 1420 1.200 22.700 0.012 1.13 38 830088 9619519 -2162 Massive Sulphide
22603 CHIMNEY-ROV 894 9.400 5.630 0.019 1.22 73 830099 9619505 -2147 Massive Sulphide
22604 CHIMNEY-ROV 3070 0.151 14.000 0.063 5.12 140 830124 9619542 -2149 Massive Sulphide
22605 CHIMNEY-ROV 2319 0.297 19.050 0.035 4.38 172 830095 9619634 -2159 Massive Sulphide
22607 CHIMNEY-ROV 1276 0.305 32.800 0.043 3.71 138 829893 9619433 -2163 Massive Sulphide
22608 CHIMNEY-ROV 1425 1.500 17.250 0.026 1.37 70 829946 9619369 -2160 Massive Sulphide
    Minimum 0.151 5.630 0.012 1.13 38        
    Maximum 9.400 32.800 0.063 5.12 172        
    Average 2.142 18.572 0.033 2.82 105        

Table 4: Solwara 18 Final Assay Results of Sulphide Samples

      Final assay result        
Sample No Sample Type Weight (g) Cu % Zn % Pb % Au g/t Ag g/t Easting2 Northing2 Depth2 Lithology
22618 CHIMNEY-ROV 2980 0.108 25.000 1.365 0.19 134 526570 9660001 -1308 Semi-massive Sulphide
22619 CHIMNEY-ROV 2995 0.499 14.100 1.050 0.18 85 526600 9659998 -1308 Semi-massive Sulphide
  Minimum 0.108 14.100 1.050 0.18 85        
  Maximum 0.499 25.000 1.365 0.19 134        
  Average 0.304 19.550 1.208 0.19 110        

Sampling Procedure

Grab samples were collected from the seafloor using a manipulator arm mounted on the remotely operated vehicle ("ROV"). Chimney samples averaging 37 kg (from 5 kg to 70 kg) were recovered and processed on board the ship. Sub-samples averaging 4.8 kg (from 1.6 kg to 7.3 kg) were taken from each of the sulphide samples using a pneumatic jack hammer, generally taking a cross section of the sample towards the base of the block. The remaining portions of each sample were retained for reference purposes.

Equipment Spread

The mapping work described herein was completed using a Fugro FV3000 series ROV. The ROV is equipped with sensors used to map the seafloor. These include: various video cameras and two magnetometers provided by Ocean Floor Geophysics Inc. In addition, high-resolution mapping sonars housed on the ROV were successfully used for the first time to identify real-time seafloor features ahead and to the sides of the ROV beyond the range of the video camera systems used previously.

For seafloor sampling purposes, the ROV is equipped with two manipulator arms and a custom-built sample tray, or "geobox", for storing up to 10 hand-sized grab samples or scoop samples. Larger samples are stowed and recovered using a custom built array of salvage bins.

Laboratory Assaying

All laboratory analyses were carried out by ALS Laboratory Group in Brisbane and Townsville, Australia. ALS operates quality systems based on international standards ISO/IEC17025:1999 "General Requirements for the Competence of Calibration and Testing Laboratories" and ISO9001:2000 "Quality Management Systems - Requirements".

Sample Custodianship

All sampling, sample handling and analysis was completed under the supervision of Nautilus personnel. Sampling was carried out aboard the MV Fugro Solstice while at sea. All sub-samples were placed into numbered plastic bags. The bagged samples were then subsequently placed into sealed plastic containers with security tags, and transported to ALS laboratories in Townsville, Australia, via courier.

Quality Assurance

Low-grade blank material, field-duplicates and externally certified geochemical reference materials with known concentrations of gold, copper, zinc, lead and silver were included for analysis with each batch of samples as per a documented quality assurance/quality control procedure. Analysis of these reference materials indicates that the quality of sample preparation and analyses are within acceptable limits for the reporting exploration results.

Qualified Person

The exploration results reported in this announcement have been compiled under the supervision of Michael Johnston, Vice President Strategic Development of Nautilus Minerals. Mr Johnston is a member of the Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy, has over 25 years experience in mining and exploration geology, and is a qualified person as defined by National Instrument 43-101. He consents to his name being used in this release.

About Nautilus Minerals Inc.

Nautilus is the first company to commercially explore the ocean floor for polymetallic seafloor massive sulphide deposits and is currently developing its first project. The Company's main focus is the Solwara 1 Project, which is located in the territorial waters of Papua New Guinea in the western Pacific Ocean. Nautilus is listed on the TSX and AIM stock exchanges, and has among its largest shareholders two of the world's leading international resource companies Anglo American (11.1%), Teck Resources (6.8%) and Metalloinvest, one of the largest and fastest growing mining and metallurgical holding companies in Russia, beneficially owns 21.0% of its shares through Gazmetall Holding (Cyprus) Limited.

Neither the TSX nor the London Stock Exchange accept responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this press release.

Contact Information

  • Nautilus Minerals Inc. (Toronto)
    Investor Relations
    +1 (416) 551 1100
    investor@nautilusminerals.com
    or
    Australian Project Office
    +61 (7) 3318 5555
    www.nautilusminerals.com
    or
    Numis Securities Limited
    John Harrison
    Nominated adviser
    + 44(0) 20 7260 1000
    or
    Numis Securities Limited
    James Black
    Corporate broking
    + 44(0) 20 7260 1000