International Graphite’s new target yields commercial graphite concentrate
International Graphite is already well advanced towards becoming one of Australia’s first producers of battery anode graphite and it now looks like it will have additional graphite resources to back it up.
Flotation testing of graphite samples, with an average grade of 20.5% total graphitic carbon (TGC) from new exploration target SDE_1 – located just 2km from the existing resource at the Springdale project in Western Australia – produced a concentrate exceeding commercial quality at 97.4% TGC.
This is hugely encouraging for International Graphite (ASX:IG6) as it provides further evidence that simple, low cost flotation is all that is required to produce high quality graphite concentrate at Springdale for downstream battery anode material processing,
It also indicates that an upgrade to the current resource of 15.6Mt grading 6% TGC – at a 2% TGC cut-off – is likely to be on the cards in the near future.
“Since June last year, we have completed more than 11,000 metres of drilling. As well as infill on the existing resource, we have focused on new targets identified by an earlier aero magnetic survey,” Managing Director Andrew Worland said.
“So far we have made three new discoveries with assays still pending for RC drilling at SDE_1.
“Drilling is continuing within the existing mineral resource and at Springdale Central, with further drilling likely at SDE_1 to conclude the current campaign.
“We are pleased with how the Springdale Graphite Project and our downstream facilities at Collie are being developed and integrated and advancing towards becoming Western Australia’s first mine to market producer of battery anode material.”
The conventional sighter flotation tests were carried out on two 6m reverse circulation drill samples collected from a depth of about 14m.
Recovery rates were excellent with up to 93.7% of the graphite reporting to the concentrate, which also had low levels of impurities.
Notably, the flotation concentrate exhibited consistent grade distribution within size fractions in the “fine” category – at less than 75 microns – and is considered to be highly amendable for micronising.
Micronised graphite is widely used in industrial applications as well as being the first step in downstream processing of battery anode material.
International Graphite has already established a battery anode material research and development centre in Collie and commissioned pilot scale micronising and spheroidising equipment.
This has allowed it to produce the first sample micronised product from imported feedstock.
Orders have also been placed for qualification-scale micronising plant equipment and progress has been made on the Definitive Feasibility Study for a 3,000t per annum micronising facility in Collie and battery anode materials studies, with metallurgical testwork, are underway.
The company expects to complete construction and commissioning of a commercial-scale graphite processing plant in Collie by the first half of 2024.
This article was developed in collaboration with International Graphite, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing.
This article does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.