Gratomic Inc has announced the results for the wet circuit process flow, independently performed by SGS Lakefield.
Open circuit cleaner flotation tests have been carried out to produce a minimum concentrate grading of 95% C(t), or Carbon total. The final concentrate of the three tests resulted in grades between 94.8 and 97.3% C(t). The open circuit total carbon recoveries remained high, ranging between 86.7 and 87.5%. Open circuit cleaner tests produced several intermediate products that are considered tailings for mass balance purposes. The commercial plant will operate in a closed circuit and these intermediate streams are cycled within the plant.
As a result, most of the graphite units that are considered tailings in these intermediate streams will be recovered into the final concentrate during closed circuit operation. Considering the amount of graphite units in the intermediate tailings’ streams, and experience with similar projects, the closed-circuit graphite recovery is expected to increase from approximately 87% to 94-95%.
Following to the wet circuit development, the Company is finalizing the tests and simulations in order to add dry air classification steps at different stages of the circuit, aiming to reach purity levels required for the battery anode applications without the use of harsh chemical processes, such as acid leaching. To date, Gratomic has sent samples for independent verification through Ortech, resulting in grades of up to 99.7% Cg through the integration of air classification. The Company has completed assembly on the processing circuit, the installation of 3 additional polishing mills and bagging units will complement the existing circuit.
Armando Farhate, COO & Head of Graphite Marketing and Sales, says: “These results are aligned with our initial expectations that the Aukam material would have a world-class performance at the concentration circuit, and will be a valuable tool in order to bring the Aukam project into production phase in the near future”
“There has been a tremendous amount of internal work conducted on the Aukam Graphite Project from the very beginning to better understand the asset, which has demonstrated profound potential at every stage. We are very pleased with the results demonstrated by the independent performance testing and look forward to what will transpire at Aukam in 2022,” stated Arno Brand, President & CEO.
The Company is working towards completing a Preliminary Feasibility Study (PFS) on the Aukam Processing plant. The study, its recommendations, and their subsequent implementation, will provide conclusions and recommendation at a PFS level of comfort relating to the scale up of the existing processing plant to a commercial scale processing facility capable of producing the desired concentrate grades and production rates.
Gratomic wishes to emphasize that the supply of graphite is conditional on Gratomic being able to bring the Aukam project into a production phase, and for any graphite being produced to meet certain technical and mineralization requirements. Gratomic continues to move its business towards production and as part of its business plan, expects to file a National Instrument 43-101 Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects resource estimate in Q1 2022.