High Voltage: For electric transport, the sky’s the limit
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Each week our High Voltage column wraps all the news driving ASX battery metals stocks with exposure to lithium, cobalt, graphite, manganese and vanadium.
People, and industry, now believe in the future of electric cars. The next frontier is air travel, where aviation start-ups are working to replace expensive jet fuel with batteries.
At last week’s Paris Airshow the world’s first commercial all-electric passenger aircraft prototype was launched.
Israeli firm Eviation says the small craft, called Alice, will carry nine passengers for up to 1040km at speeds of 440km/h.
— Reuters Top News (@Reuters) June 18, 2019
In early June, UBS said the move towards hybrid-electric (HE) flight could happen sooner than anticipated.
“We estimate a market opportunity of some $US178bn, with 16,077 HE planes over 2028-40 (chiefly general aviation, light business jets and regional aircraft) offering 20 per cent lower operating cost savings per trip relative to the 50-70-seaters in service,” UBS says.
It’s a rough time to be a battery metals play. Over the past year, only a handful of stock have made decent returns – led by WA lithium explorer Liontown (ASX:LTR) which is up 296 per cent.
Of the companies on our list, 99 lost ground, 46 were ahead and 40 were steady this week.
This week, Manganese play Element 25 (ASX:E25) was up 31 per cent to 16.3c on no news – that’s the stock’s highest point since May last year.
Argentinean lithium explorer Dark Horse Resources (ASX:DHR) and Scandinavian vanadium play Pursuit Minerals (ASX:PUR) jumped 25 per cent and 13 per cent respectively, also on no news.
And CleanTeQ (ASX:CLQ), which has kicked off the partnering process for its Sunrise nickel-cobalt battery materials project, received a 13 per cent boost this week.
CleanTeQ is looking to sell up to 50 per cent interest of Sunrise, in combination with long-term offtake, after receiving “numerous in-bound enquiries from a range of participants in the electric vehicle supply chain in relation to project level ownership, long-term offtake and other financing arrangements”.
Last week, producer Pilbara Minerals (ASX:PLS) told investors that spodumene concentrate sales would be “constrained” in June and July.
Managing director Ken Brinsden said it was no secret that the spodumene supply market was experiencing “short-term challenges” as the big Chinese players slowly ramped up chemical conversion capacity to meet demand.
But Altura Mining’s (ASX:AJM) operational update, released the same week, couldn’t be more different.
The miner says sales from its flagship Altura lithium project in June is currently on track to better the May record.
Importantly, Altura says, it continues to receive positive feedback from offtake customers regarding product quality.
“Feedback from offtake customers continues to be positive with our shipments consistently delivering SC6.0-quality concentrate with low iron, low mica and optimal moisture content,” the company says.
The news sent the stock up 29 per cent for the week to its highest point since March.
Here’s a table of ASX battery metal stocks with exposure to lithium, cobalt, graphite, manganese and vanadium>>>
Scroll or swipe to reveal table. Click headings to sort. Best viewed on a laptop: