VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA -- (Marketwire) -- 01/21/13 -- IMPACT Silver Corp. (TSX VENTURE: IPT) ("IMPACT" or "the Company") is pleased to provide its year-end review of exploration activities in 2012 at the Royal Mines of Zacualpan District and adjacent Mamatla District in central Mexico.
-- Two new mines coming on-stream in Q1 2013 as a result of successful exploration programs.-- Significant silver discoveries at Mirasol and Condesa in 2012 will drive continued drilling in 2013.-- Advanced use of IMPACT's ArcGIS database resulted in 2012's substantial increase in drilling success.
ROYAL MINES OF ZACUALPAN SILVER-GOLD DISTRICT
2012 was the most successful year to date for IMPACT's exploration department.
Brian Hall, IMPACT's Chief Geologist, stated, "More exploration work was completed on all fronts (prospecting, geological mapping, and drilling) with the overall results being substantially better than in past years. Two factors have likely contributed to what we consider to be a banner year for IMPACT's exploration department. The first being the growing maturity of the ArcGIS computer database that the exploration department uses to prioritize areas for field work and drilling and, secondly, an overall increased level of the skill and experience of each member on the exploration team."
During 2012, fieldwork in the form of detailed geological mapping and rock sampling was completed for the Tepejuate, Santa Efignia, Santa Teresa, Cuetzillos Sud and El Gigante mapping areas of which all, except Tepejuate, are located in the Valle de Oro area adjacent to IMPACT's currently producing Noche Buena Mine. New areas where geological mapping fieldwork was initiated in 2012 included San Pablo Norte -a new area to the southeast of previous IMPACT work- as well as the El Orito and La Escondida areas, which are located in the Valle de Oro area. Favourable results have been obtained from each of these areas, with the San Pablo Norte exceeding expectations so far.
The number of rock samples collected in the field by IMPACT's prospecting and geological mapping teams were substantially greater in 2012 (3,607) than in 2011 (2,711), an increase of 33%. In terms of the average grades for these samples, a significant increase was evident for gold and copper contents overall, reflecting more focused fieldwork in the Valle de Oro area where these metals predominate, in preparation for a number of planned drill programs on a variety of different targets to be initiated in 2013. In terms of individual assay values, many high grade samples in silver, gold and copper were collected.
Drill programs in 2012 were conducted on the Oscar, Condesa, Carlos Pacheco and Mirasol areas of the Zacualpan Silver-Gold District, as well as expansion drilling on the Capire Mine development area of the Mamatla VMS District.
Total drilling increased by 20% in 2012 to 35,274 meters, up 5,793 meters from 2011. Past metrics which were used to ascertain the drilling success rate for new areas (drill intersections of 120 g/t silver over 2.0 meters was considered to be a minimum threshold) are now obsolete, as 2012 attained a success rate of 100%. Using a new form of metrics that counts the number of kilogram-plus grade intersections for silver (1,000+ g/t Ag) from the drill holes, 17 were intersected in 2012 versus ten in 2011. This 70% increase is a reflection of the higher grade targets that are now being selected for drilling to which the ArcGIS database is an integral part. A significant portion of this increase in high grade silver intercepts was the result of identifying and drilling at the newly discovered Mirasol Silver Area.