Mineral Commodities (ASX:MRC) has unearthed high grades of graphite that it says will be good for the economics of its Munglinup project in Western Australia.

The latest drilling program has hit grades of up to 49.3 per cent total graphitic carbon (TGC) from 54m.

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Typical graphite grades average around 10-15 per cent, and anything above 100m is considered shallow and a cost advantage.

Investors liked the news, pushing shares up from yesterday’s close at 17c to hit 19c this morning.

“The results will be incorporated into an updated resource model, pit design and mine schedule for inclusion in the DFS [definitive feasibility study] to fully capture the value of these results in the project economics,” chairman Mark Caruso said.

“These results continue to support the plan that Munglinup will be a low-cost operation and produce high-quality graphite concentrate beyond the initial PFS [pre-feasibility study] mine life.”

The drilling was part of a resource expansion program and has confirmed the continuity of mineralisation along strike of Halberts South and Whites/McCarthy West zones in both quantum and grade.


In other battery metals news:


Lepidico (ASX:LPD) has started commissioning its lithium pilot plant. The company has started producing lepidolite concentrate from ore sourced from the Alvarrões mine in Portugal. Lepidico says the pilot plant will be delivered on schedule and within its $2.6m budget.

Galan Lithium (ASX:GLN) says it has now confirmed lithium brines over a 2.5km strike at its Candelas project in Argentina. It has just finished drilling its third hole, which delivered a hit of 192m at 802 mg/l of lithium with low impurities. Galan says the results indicate highly conductive and specific gravity brine was still being encountered to the bottom of the hole — which was 454m deep. Now Galan is onto its fourth hole.

Infinity Lithium (ASX:INF) is fast tracking work on the PFS for its San Jose lithium project after upping its stake in the project to 75 per cent. Stage one beneficiation test work has been completed and has confirmed the outcomes of the earlier lithium hydroxide scoping study. Stage two work is now under way, with the PFS slated for completion in June or July.

Strike Resources (ASX:SRK) has started work on an environmental assessment for its Solaroz lithium brine project following positive talks with the Argentinean government. The company expects the work to take about three months to complete.