The largest graphite deposit ever discovered in China has
been uncovered in the in the autonomous region of Inner
Mongolia, Shanghai Daily has reported.
According to the paper, the deposit has proven reserves of
130m tonnes flake graphite. "With good mining conditions, the
graphite will be easy to exploit and it will be possible to
conduct strip mining there," Li Shirong, director of the
Department of Land and Resources in Inner Mongolia, is quoted
With an average grade of 5.45% C, for around 7m tonnes
contained graphite. "The product value is estimated to be worth
[Chinese renminbi, Rmb) 700bn ($109bn*) and is planned to last
for 28 years," Liu Kai, who is in charge of mining the deposit,
told Shanghai Daily.
TSX-V-listed Alabama Graphite Corp. has
released the results of its preliminary economic assessment
(PEA) of its Coosa graphite project
in the US state of Alabama, which gave the site a net present
value (NPV) of $320m after tax, at an 8% discount, and an
internal rate of return (IRR) of 45.7%, after tax.
Recommending that Coosa be advanced to feasibility stage,
the PEA estimated that the project will require initial capital
expenditure of $43.2m with a payback period of two years, after
tax, from the commencement of production. Operating expenditure
over the 27-year life of the mine is calculated at $533m.
Base case annual cash flow is pegged at $40.7m after tax,
while life of mine gross revenue is expected to be $2.4bn.
The PEA is based on Alabama’s plan to produce
and sell two speciality, high-purity graphite products: coated
spherical graphite (CSPG), at a price of $9,000/tonne and
purified micronised flake product (PMG) at a price of
$2,000/tonne. The two products will account for 75% and 25%,
respectively, of Coosa’s output, with initial
plant capacity targeted at 5,000 tpa.
Australia-based Graphitecorp Ltd commenced
trading on the ASX on 2 December, following the completion of
an initial public offering (IPO), which closed on 13
According to a report by Brisbane’s Courier
Mail, the listing makes Graphitecorp the only resources
company to launch a successful IPO on the Australian stock
market this year.
The company, which is developing the Mount Dromedary graphite
project in Queensland, said that it is progressing a phase two
drilling programme at the site and expects the work to be
finished in the next week.
It added that the aim of the drilling is to expand Mount
Dromedary’s maiden resource which was defined in
Graphitecorp’s September 2015 drilling programme.
The project presently has a potential exploration target of
between 14m tonnes and 21m tonnes contained graphite.
In another recent graphite-related listing, technology
business Hazer Group Ltd has also floated on
the ASX after completing an Australian dollar (A$) 5m ($3.66m)
IPO. The company issued 26m shares to investors at a price of
Hazer has developed a process which it says can produce
hydrogen gas and high purity synthetic graphite from a
combination of natural gas and iron ore at low cost with
negligible CO2 emissions.
The technique, known as the Hazer process, was developed by
the University of Western Australia and is presently being
commercialised with the aim of supplying its products for use
in fuel cell technologies.
Fellow Australian business Valence Industries
Ltd is to suspend graphite processing activities at
its Uley plant on South Australia’s Eyre
Peninsula, following a review of the company’s
Valence said that halting processing would save the company
around Australian dollar A$290,000 per month in operating
costs. It intends to continue using existing stockpiled
material at Uley to prepare samples for sales and
"Production at the site has been ongoing at low levels for
some months in order for us to achieve some inventory of on
spec material to provide to customers for qualification
purposes," Robert Mencel, Valence’s managing
director, said. "To suspend processing at Uley is an extremely
difficult decision, however the existing production rate was
uneconomic and could not continue," he added.
In September, Valence slashed its workforce by 60% and cut
the operating rate at the Uley plant to 50% of its nameplate
capacity in an effort to reduce expenditure.
Nearby, Oakdale Resources Ltd has released
a scoping study for its Oakdale graphite property on the Eyre
Peninsula, which indicated that the project, if developed,
would have a payback period of nine months, a production cost
of $286/tonne and an NPV of $170.2m over a three year mine
The proposed operation at Oakdale envisages a mining rate of
2m tpa ore for an output of 94,500 tpa. The deposit has a
resource of 13.5m tonnes at an average grade of 3.3% total
graphitic carbon (TGC), with a high grade component of 6.3m
tonnes grading at 4.7% TGC.
Also on the Eyre Peninsula, multi-commodity explorer
Renascor Resources Ltd has acquired an option
over the Arno graphite project.
Arno has been previously explored, with initial prospecting
indicating that the property contains a large tonnage of high
quality, coarse flake graphite, based on intersections from
eight holes drilled to date. Data from an airborne magnetic
survey suggest the project’s conductivity zones
extend over a strike length of 5km.
Renascor, which is also developing the Munglinup project in
Western Australia, has committed to spend Australian dollar
A$400,000 on further exploration at the site within six months
to acquire a 20% interest and can assume a 29% stake by issuing
38.66m shares. The remaining 51% can be secured through the
issuance of A$2m-worth of shares and 15m options.
Elsewhere, ASX-listed Magnis Resources Ltd
has achieved product grades of up to 99.6% TGC from milling and
flotation test work on ore from its Nachu graphite project in
Tanzania. Magnis said that the results were achieved without
chemical or thermal purification.
The company said that flotation processing also yield flake
sizes of +300 microns and +180 microns with purities of around
99.4% TGC, which demonstrate "excellent expansion performance",
according to Magnis.
The processing techniques employed have been developed for
the proposed processing plant at Nachu and the company is
aiming to produce material that out-competes synthetic graphite
on price for use in lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries. Magnis said
that qualification of its graphite products for use in Li-ion
batteries is currently underway.
In Sri Lanka, Canada-headquartered Elcora Resources
Corp. has completed construction of its Ragedara
graphite processing plant and commenced processing of
stockpiled graphite at the site.
The company said that its technology has been custom
designed to target high grade Sri Lankan vein graphite with
minimal use of chemicals and no environmentally damaging
products, by-products or waste.
The Ragedara plant currently has a processing capacity of
2,500 tpa and can achieve a final product purity of over 99% C,
according to Elcora.
In Canada, Saint Jean Carbon Inc. has filed
a patent for a technique of carbon coating spherical graphite
for use in lithium-ion batteries.
Accounting for less than 1% by weight, carbon coating is an
essential process in the preparation of making spherical
graphite as it prevents the graphite surface from making direct
contact with the battery’s electrolyte.
Saint Jean’s technique is based on a continuous
feed of graphite from a spherical shaping system through a
drying chamber followed by a vacuum chamber and then into a
magnet-lined high pressure vessel. Once suspended in the
vessel, application of an electrical charge to the graphite
allows carbon to be repelled by the magnets and attracted to
the graphite particles.
The company is looking to enter supply agreements with North
American battery manufacturers for spherical graphite produced
using its proprietary method.
Visual analysis of the first hole drilled by TSX-V-listed
Ashburton Ventures Inc. at the Buckingham
graphite property in Quebec has identified several broad
intervals of graphite mineralisation.
The company is now moving to drill other targets at the
site, including the trench labelled as 22C, which previously
yielded channel sample grades of up to 21.6% over 145
ASX-listed Sayona Mining Ltd is finalising
a new agreement with Brasil Graphite SA to extend and
restructure an option to acquire the Itabela graphite project
The option, which was agreed on 5 August 2015, expired on 2
December 2015. According to Sayona, the restructured deal will
include a substantial reduction in committed cash. The new
terms are expected to be announced within 10 days of the expiry
UK-AIM listed Alba Mineral Resources Plc
has reported "highly encouraging" results from a preliminary
study of its Amitsoq graphite project in Greenland.
The company said that the study was completed during a
recent field visit to the project, which had been conducted
with the objectives of determining access to the historic mine
site, ascertain the suitability of locating drill rigs in the
area, safely access any open workings, and collect
representative samples to determine carbon content and flake
Alba added that 11 samples were independently analysed in
Copenhagen, which yielded carbon contents ranging from 20.5% C
to 35.4% C. The company intends to undertake additional
metallurgical test work to determine the total recoverable
In financing news, TSX-V-listed Graphite One
Resources Inc. intends to complete a non-brokered
private placement offering of 6.66m units to raise gross
proceeds of C$600,000.
Each unit will be priced at $0.09 and consist of one common
share and one transferable common share purchase warrant, with
the latter entitling the holder to purchase one additional
common share in Graphite One for $0.012 for a period of three
years from the placement closing date.
Net proceeds of the raising will be used to fund exploration
and development work at the company’s Graphite
Creek project in Alaska and for general working capital
Graphite One has also settled its outstanding debt of
C$66,000 through the issuance of 733,334 shares to three
ASX-listed Mustang Resources Ltd has raised
$5.75m to spend on developing its graphite, diamond and ruby
assets in Mozambique.
The company issued just under 30m shares at a price of
$0.20/share in order to bring in the cash, which it plans to
spend on bulk sampling at its licences in northern Cabo Delgado
Also listed on the ASX, Black Rock Mining
Ltd has divested two of its mineral assets to allow it
to focus on its share of the Mahenge graphite property in
The projects Black Rock has decided to relinquish are the
Ocean Hill hydrocarbon asset in Australia and a geothermal
asset in Hungary. The sales brought the company in excess of
A$500,000, according to its managing director, Steven
Finally, in graphene news, US-based Graphene 3D Lab
Inc. and Graphene Laboratories Inc.
have signed a research, development and royalty agreement with
an unnamed Fortune 500 listed manufacturer for "the development
of multi-phase deliverables" over the course of the next 12
The companies said that, owing to confidentiality clauses
contained in the agreement, neither the specific research
objectives nor the name of the partner could be disclosed.
The deal provides for all R&D costs and royalty
obligations to be paid by the partner, as well as a first right
of refusal for supply of any graphene-related materials in
future manufacturing pertaining to intellectual property (IP)
developed under the agreement. All IP developed under the
scope of the Agreement will be jointly held by both
"Natural Graphite Report –
Strategic Outlook to 2020" is now available
to purchase. For more information or to request a sample of the
report please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call +44 (0) 20 7779
8141. The trends outlined in the report will also be discussed
5th Graphite & Graphene
Conference on 8-9 December at the
Waldorf Hilton in London.
*Conversion made December 2015