THE DRILL SERGEANT: Kibaran Resources (ASX: KNL) revealed it has produced superior-quality battery-grade graphite for the lithium-ion battery market using graphite from the company’s Epanko project in Tanzania.
Kibaran Resources claim the results to be extremely important as they demonstrate potential for the company to establish a downstream processing operation to supply the high growth lithium-ion battery market.
Samples of the battery-grade graphite, which was produced under commercial production conditions at a well-regarded graphite processing plant, have been sent to key anode manufacturers in Asia under the binding agreement and partnership the company has with leading graphite trader Sojitz Corporation.
Kibaran explained the tests were part of a Feasibility Study on the production of battery-grade graphite using product from Epanko.
Kibaran is specifically targeting the major anode manufactures outside China, where enormous growth in demand is expected on the back of the electric vehicle market.
The company declared the quality of its battery-grade graphite to be superior to that produced in China, adding that one major anode manufacturer has advised Kibaran the product’s analytical values even exceeded its high expectations.
Current demand for lithium-ion-battery-grade natural graphite is estimated at 48,000 tonnes per annum with all this material sourced from China.
Kibaran has sufficient quantity to distribute its samples all over the world, including to the important market of the US where Tesla dominates production of electric vehicles, and to Germany.
“Kibaran is capitalising on the strong forecast growth in demand for battery-grade graphite from the booming lithium-ion battery industry,” Kibaran Resources managing director Andrew Spinks said in the company’s announcement to the Australian Securities Exchange.
“With a focus on production of realistic quantities of high-quality battery-grade graphite at competitive costs, paired with environmental sustainability, Kibaran can be a leading non-Chinese supplier.”