Allana Resources Inc. announce that it has completed its initial reconnaissance exploration programme on its Ethiopian Potash Project located in the Danakil Depression. This programme focused on structural mapping of the salt domes in the centre of the basin, structural mapping of the west side of the Danakil Graben and sampling of geothermal hot springs to determine the chemistry of the brines. The reconnaissance programme was completed by the consulting firm ERCOSPLAN and Allana geologists.
Structural mapping of the salt domes concentrated on Dallol Mountain and Ashe Ale. Faults trending NW-SE dominate the salt domes and conjugate NE-trending faults occur locally. Data suggests that Dallol likely has an intrusive source at depth that may be generating the hydrothermal system and causing doming of the overlying salt layers. Ashe Ale is interpreted as a small diapir and may consist of salt from the lowest part of the stratigraphic section. Possible potash layers may have been dragged to the surface with the dome however more work including drilling is required to confirm this interpretation.
Structural mapping of the western flank of the Danakil Graben was completed to gain a better understanding of possible fault offsets in the potash horizon by the northeast trending faults. This mapping indicates that the stratigraphy on the flank is complex, the age of the known faults is unknown; however the faults that were identified showed only minor offset, typically less than 5 metres. Geophysical studies, including ground magnetic and seismic surveys, have been recommended by ERCOSPLAN to provide the additional data required to determine the detailed effects of these faults, if any, on the potash mineralization.
Sampling of brines from geothermal hot springs in the Dallol area indicated that the brines are rich in NaCl, with subordinate KCl and MgCl2. The brines at various hot springs reach temperatures of 105 degreesC and densities of 1.25 g/cm3. The relative abundances of the different components and the lack of MgSO4 suggest that the KCl and MgCl2 content of the brines is not due to partial dissolution of the potash horizon.
Farhad Abasov, President and CEO of Allana, commented “Allana has successfully completed a reconnaissance programme of structural and geological mapping as well as evaluation of hydrothermal brine geochemistry on its Danakil Potash Project. While more work is required, we have been encouraged that all studies to date indicate continuity of the potash horizon. It is also encouraging that the brine chemistry indicates that dissolution of the potash horizon by hot brines is not a major factor. Allana plans to move forward with approximately 1,500 metres of diamond drilling, down hole seismic studies and 2D-seismic surface studies in the remainder of 2009″.