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INDUSTRY BULLETIN – Power Nickel Believes Company Is One of The World’s Best Nickel Investment Opportunities

Posted by Paul Nanuwa at 12:47 PM on Wednesday, April 24th, 2024

As the world shifts towards a more sustainable future, electric vehicles (EVs) have become a key player in reducing carbon emissions and fossil fuel dependency. Central to this transition is the nickel used in lithium-ion batteries, the power source for EVs. In this context, Power Nickel Inc., a Canadian junior exploration company, has positioned itself as a leader in the exploration and development of high-grade nickel projects. With the company’s recent acquisition of an additional 30% stake in the Nisk Project, Power Nickel has solidified its role in the rapidly growing EV battery manufacturing industry.

Industry Outlook and Power Nickel’s Trajectory

The demand for nickel in EV battery manufacturing is on a steep upward trajectory. According to industry projections, the global demand for nickel is expected to increase six-fold by 2030, driven by the rapid growth of electric vehicle production worldwide. This surge in demand underscores the critical role that nickel plays in the journey towards a greener future.

Power Nickel’s focus on developing high-grade nickel-copper platinum group elements (PGE) mineralization is perfectly aligned with this industry trend. The company’s flagship project, the Nisk Project, encompasses 20 kilometers of strike length with numerous high-grade intercepts, positioning Power Nickel to meet the industry’s growing demand for nickel.

Voices of Authority

Industry leaders and experts are emphasizing the importance of nickel in the transition to electric vehicles and a sustainable future. Terry Lynch, CEO of Power Nickel, commented on the recent acquisition, stating, “We look forward to ramping up our efforts throughout 2024 and 2025 as we seek to bring these targets to a production decision.” This sentiment reflects the optimism within the industry and Power Nickel’s commitment to contributing to a carbon-neutral future.

Kenneth Williamson, Power Nickel’s VP of Exploration, added that the company’s drilling program has yielded significant results, providing a strong foundation for future exploration. “With 15 successful holes at the Lion Discovery zone and additional assays on the way, we’re excited about the potential of the Nisk Project,” he noted.

Power Nickel’s FLASH Highlights

The latest resource estimate for Power Nickel’s Nisk Project presents a promising outlook with significant indications of nickel and associated minerals. The assessment reveals a considerable amount of both indicated and inferred resources, indicating the high potential of the project’s nickel sulfide deposits.

Here are the key details from the resource estimate:

  • Indicated Resources:
    • The Nisk Project has over 5.4 million tonnes of indicated resources, grading an average of 1.05% Nickel Equivalent (NiEq). This category reflects mineralized material with a higher level of geological confidence, derived from drilling results and other studies.
  • Inferred Resources:
    • In addition to the indicated resources, there are 1.8 million tonnes of inferred resources, grading at 1.35% NiEq. While this category has lower geological certainty compared to indicated resources, it shows the considerable potential for further exploration and resource expansion.

In addition, Power Nickel has achieved several key milestones that underscore its strategic position in the industry. The company’s acquisition of an additional 30% stake in the Nisk Project, increasing its ownership to 80%, is a significant step towards its goal of developing Canada’s first carbon-neutral nickel mine. Additionally, Power Nickel’s Winter 2024 drill program revealed high-grade assay results, further validating the project’s potential.

These achievements not only demonstrate Power Nickel’s commitment to exploration and development but also highlight its capacity to contribute to the broader EV battery manufacturing industry.

Real-world Relevance

Power Nickel’s work has a direct impact on the EV industry and, by extension, on our everyday lives. The nickel sourced from projects like Nisk is a key component in lithium-ion batteries, which power electric vehicles and a wide range of portable electronic devices. This connection between nickel mining and green technology is a tangible example of how companies like Power Nickel are driving positive change in the world.

Moreover, the company’s commitment to carbon neutrality aligns with the broader sustainability goals that many industries are striving to achieve. As electric vehicles become more prevalent, the need for sustainable nickel sourcing will only grow, reinforcing Power Nickel’s relevance in this evolving landscape.

Looking Ahead with Power Nickel

Power Nickel’s forward-looking goals are closely tied to the optimistic industry forecast for the nickel sector. The company’s ongoing exploration and development efforts are set to continue throughout 2024 and 2025, with plans to bring the Nisk Project to a production decision. This ambitious approach reflects Power Nickel’s confidence in the project’s potential and its dedication to contributing to the growth of the nickel industry.

With the demand for nickel in EV battery manufacturing expected to soar, Power Nickel is well-positioned to capitalize on this trend. As the company moves forward, its focus on high-grade mineralization, sustainability, and exploration will play a crucial role in shaping its future success.


Power Nickel’s recent achievements and strategic trajectory make it a compelling participant in the nickel industry’s growth narrative. With the increasing demand for nickel in EV battery manufacturing, the company’s focus on high-grade projects and sustainable practices positions it as a key player in this dynamic industry. Power Nickel’s journey towards becoming a leading provider of nickel and multi-element mineralization is a story worth watching.



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Industry Bulletin: Roskill Sees ‘Structural Shift’ in Copper Market on Intense Buying From China SPONSOR: Candente Copper $ $ $ $ $

Posted by AGORACOM at 10:47 AM on Friday, August 28th, 2020

Candente Copper is currently focused on its 100% owned Canariaco project, which includes the Feasibility stage Canariaco Norte deposit as well as the Canariaco Sur deposit and Quebrada Verde prospect, located within the western Cordillera of the Peruvian Andes in the Department of Lambayeque in Northern Peru. Canariaco is included in Goldman Sachs 84 Top Copper Projects Worldwide

An employee looks over sheets of copper cathode at Glencore’s Lomas Bayas copper operation in Chile. Credit: Glencore.

Copper was once again approaching the psychologically important US$3 per lb. level on the back of falling inventories, booming Chinese demand and pandemic hit supply from South America, the U.S. and Africa.

On Aug. 26, Copper for delivery in December trading in New York jumped 1.5% to US$2.9965 per lb. ($6,605 a tonne) in afternoon trading, bringing gains in 2020 to more than 7%, and 50% since the Covid-19 lows struck in March.

A new report from Roskill suggests the rally in copper, which has surprised many with its speed, has further to go.

Jonathan Barnes, associate consultant for copper at the London-based metal and minerals research firm, says while the effects of Covid-19 could decrease world consumption of the metal by 3%-4% this year, the drop in mine output and scrap flows has been greater.

This is most visible in the fall in inventories around the world.

Globally, total visible stocks, which include those on exchanges and bonded warehouses in China, fell by 40% from March through July to below 600,000 tonnes. LME warehouse inventories are at 13-year lows.

China is responsible for more than half of the world’s copper consumption, and the country is buying copper at record-setting rates.

“China is importing more refined metal from nearly every country suggesting a structural shift, not a temporary change,” says Barnes. 

“If you are looking for signs of panic buying, you can find evidence of that in China – total Chinese stocks represent less than two weeks’ consumption at current rates of use.”

In the rest of the world, where demand has dropped by much more relative to China, stocks represent only one week of consumption.

The lack of available scrap – imports are down 50% in the first half – after Beijing delayed new importing rules, has forced the Chinese buyers to replace secondary sources with cathode, further driving down visible inventories.

Roskill estimates a 300,000-tonne shortfall in imports of secondary materials — scrap, ingots and granules – into China from January to July.

Barnes believes global scrap flows may not normalize until the first quarter of next year, but would depend on new rules in China.

Roskill’s sources have not been able to confirm that China’s State Reserve Bureau has been buying up strategic stocks of copper, “but if they were, they probably would have done so earlier, when prices were much lower,” Barnes says.

Disruptions to mine supply could be between 750,000 to 1 million tonnes in 2020, with eight out of the 10 largest miners recording lower output during the first half of the year.

China’s concentrate imports are down year on year, while sourcing anodes from the central Africa copper belt is also hitting roadblocks.

Barnes says China’s two-year restocking cycle is rising in amplitude as the country’s dominance in the copper market increases, and he expects an 11.5% rise for the full year in copper imports.

The country has a structural copper market deficit, and it restocks whenever LME prices appear attractive. Moreover, says Barnes, China can take a long term view and use tomorrow what it does not need today.

Roskill expects trade data to show another bumper August for imports, despite being a seasonally muted month for shipments.

The copper price will likely rise further towards the end of 2020, Barnes says, and the current environment has strong parallels to the rebound in the copper price after the global financial crisis.

Copper hit a low of US$1.32 per lb. in January 2009, then surged to US$3.55 by April 2010, on its way to an all-time high of US$4.58 (more than $10,000 per tonne) in February 2011.


Agustin Pichot $ Appointed Director Representing Fortescue Metals Group $ $FCX $BHP $ $FMG.asx

Posted by AGORACOM at 8:13 AM on Monday, August 24th, 2020
  • Fortescue Metals Group Limited holds 19.9% shareholding in the Company.
  • Fortesque is a strategic Advisor to advance Canariaco Norte

VANCOUVER, British Columbia, Aug. 24, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Candente Copper Corp. (TSX:DNT, BVL:DNT) (“Candente Copper” or the “Company”) is pleased to announce that Mr. Agustin Pichot has been appointed to the board of directors of Candente Copper, representing Fortescue Metals Group Limited (“Fortescue”) who has a 19.9% shareholding in the Company.

Mr. Pichot is President of Fortescue South America and is responsible for the development of Fortescue’s mining, energy and infrastructure business across the region. 

Previously (in 2000) Mr. Pichot founded Pegas Group, a large South American sport media and marketing agency and also worked in asset management and global investment strategies in the financial sector in Argentina from 2015 to 2018.

Prior to 2010, Mr. Pichot spent 16 years as a player and national captain in world rugby representing Argentina and France.  He also served as an Executive Board Member, for both the Argentina Rugby Union and the International Rugby Board between 2011 and 2020.  A philanthropist, Mr. Pichot is also part of the executive teams of two foundations, Fundación Enrique Alberto Pichot and the Minderoo Foundation.

On another matter, John Black has advised the company that due to his many other demanding commitments, he has decided not to stand for re-election as Director at the upcoming Annual General Meeting (“AGM”) in September.  We are pleased to advise, however, that Mr. Black will stay on as an advisor to the Company and as a member of the Cañariaco Norte Technical Committee, which the Company is forming with Fortescue. 

About Candente Copper
Candente Copper is a mineral exploration company engaged in acquisition, exploration, and development of mineral properties. The Company is currently focused on its 100% owned Cañariaco project, which includes the Feasibility stage Cañariaco Norte deposit as well as the Cañariaco Sur deposit and Quebrada Verde prospect, located within the Western Cordillera of the Peruvian Andes in the Department of Lambayeque in Northern Peru.

On behalf of the Board of Candente Copper Corp.

“Joanne C. Freeze” P.Geo.
President, CEO and Director
For further information please contact:

“Joanne C. Freeze” P.Geo.
President, CEO and Director
Tel +1 604-689-1957
[email protected]

Candente Copper $ Adopts Shareholder Rights Plan $ $FCX $BHP $

Posted by AGORACOM at 8:07 AM on Tuesday, August 11th, 2020

VANCOUVER, British Columbia, Aug. 11, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Candente Copper Corp. (TSX:DNT, BVL:DNT) (“Candente Copper” or the “Company”) advises that Mr. Luis Miguel Inchaustegui Zevallos has resigned as Advisor and Director of our Peruvian subsidiary, Cañariaco Copper Perú S.A. (”Cañariaco”) and has been named Minister of Energy and Mines of Peru. 

We thank Mr. Inchaustegui for all of his excellent advice and wish him all the best in his new endeavours.

On another matter the Company also advises that the Board of Directors has adopted a new shareholder rights plan (“Rights Plan”), which is designed to encourage the fair treatment of the Company’s Shareholders in connection with any potential take‑over bid for the Company. The Rights Plan is not intended to deter or prevent take‑over bids and is similar to plans adopted recently by several other Canadian public companies and approved by their Shareholders. 

Background and Purpose of the Rights Plan

The Rights Plan will:

  1. encourage the fair treatment of shareholders of the Company in connection with any Offer to Acquire the outstanding Voting Shares;
  2. ensure, to the extent possible, that the shareholders of the Company and the Board of Directors have adequate time to consider and evaluate any unsolicited Offer to Acquire the outstanding Voting Shares;
  3. ensure, to the extent possible, that the Board of Directors has adequate time to identify, develop and negotiate value-enhancing alternatives, as appropriate, to any unsolicited Offer to Acquire the outstanding Voting Shares; and
  4. generally assist the Board of Directors to enhance shareholder value.

Take‑over bid contests for corporate control provide a singular opportunity for Shareholders to obtain a one‑time gain. After the acquisition of effective control, the opportunity for this one‑time gain normally does not re‑occur. As with most public companies, it is possible for a person to secure control of the Company through the ownership of much less than 50% of the Company’s shares. Without a shareholder rights plan, a bidder could acquire effective control of the Company over a relatively short period of time, through open market and private purchases and using various techniques permitted under Canadian securities legislation, all without making a bid available to all Shareholders. This acquisition of control would probably be an effective deterrent to other potential offerors. The person acquiring control might also be able to consolidate and increase its control, over a period of time, without the price for control ever being tested through an open market auction. Shareholder rights plans are designed to prevent this occurrence by forcing all acquisitions of control into a public offer mode.

A public offer will not necessarily achieve all of the objectives of ensuring the maximum value to Shareholders. The Rights Plan is intended to provide the Board with sufficient time to pursue alternatives and to provide Shareholders with sufficient time to properly assess any take‑over bid.

The Company is not proposing the Rights Plan in response to or in anticipation of any acquisition or take‑over bid. The Rights Plan is not intended to prevent a take‑over of the Company, to secure continuance of current management or the directors in office, or to deter fair offers for the Company’s shares. The Rights Plan does not inhibit or prevent any Shareholder from using the proxy mechanism set out in the BCBCA to promote a change in the management or direction of the Company. The Rights Plan may, however, increase the price to be paid by a potential offeror to obtain control of the Company and may discourage certain transactions.

The Rights Plan does not affect in any way the Company’s financial condition. The initial issuance of the Rights will not dilute the Company’s shares and will not affect reported earnings or cash flow per share until the Rights separate from the underlying common shares and become exercisable. The adoption of the Rights Plan will not lessen or affect the duty of the Company’s directors to act honestly, in good faith, and in the Company’s best interests. The Rights Plan is designed to provide the directors with the means to negotiate with an offeror and with sufficient time to seek out and identify alternative transactions on behalf of the Shareholders.

The Rights Plan is subject to Toronto Stock Exchange and Shareholder approval at the upcoming Annual General Meeting on September 17th, 2020.  If the Shareholders do not approve the Rights Plan, it will terminate or not become effective, as applicable. The Rights Plan will also expire if the Rights are redeemed by the Company. A copy of the Rights Plan Agreement can be requested for review to [email protected].Once the Rights Plan has been approved, it will be filed on SEDAR at and posted on the Company’s website at

About Candente Copper
Candente Copper is a mineral exploration company engaged in acquisition, exploration, and development of mineral properties. The Company is currently focused on its 100% owned Cañariaco project, which includes the Feasibility stage Cañariaco Norte deposit as well as the Cañariaco Sur deposit and Quebrada Verde prospect, located within the western Cordillera of the Peruvian Andes in the Department of Lambayeque in Northern Peru.

At Cañariaco Norte, 7.5 billion pounds of copper have been delineated in a Measured and Indicated* resource of 752.4 million tonnes grading 0.49% copper equivalent** and an Inferred Resource of 157.7 million tonnes at 0.44% copper equivalent has also been delineated.

Fifteen drill holes have confirmed that Cañariaco Sur hosts a porphyry-copper deposit, however the average grade and full dimensions of the deposit are as yet unknown. Quebrada Verde also hosts a geochemical and geophysical target where porphyry style copper mineralization is exposed in creek beds. 

Candente Copper also holds other porphyry copper-gold exploration projects in Peru. 

Joanne C. Freeze, P.Geo., CEO, is the Qualified Person as defined by National Instrument 43-101 for the projects discussed above. She has reviewed and approved the contents of this release.

*The ‘Measured and Indicated Resource listed above consists of Measured Resources of 338.1Mt at 0.48% Cu , 0.08 g/t Au, and 2.0/t Ag (0.52% Cu Eq.), plus Indicated Resources of 414.3Mt at 0.43% Cu, 0.06 g/t Au, and 1.8 g/t Ag (o.46% Cu Eq.).  All resources quoted in this release are based on a 0.30% copper cut-off grade and 229 drill holes completed to the end of 2008.

**Copper equivalent grade including gold and silver, metal recoveries (copper 90%, gold 55%; silver 50%) and smelter returns (copper 96.5%: gold 93%; silver 90%) applied. Copper grade equivalent calculation: Cu Eq% =(Cu % + ((Au grade x Au price x Au recovery x Au smelter return%)+(Ag grade x Ag price x Ag recovery x Ag smelter return%))/(22.0462 x Cu price x 31.0135 g/t x Cu recovery x Cu smelter return%). The metal prices used are: copper US$2.50/lb, gold US$1,035/oz and silver US$17.25/oz.

On behalf of the Board of Candente Copper Corp.

“Joanne C. Freeze” P.Geo.
President, CEO and Director
For further information please contact:

“Joanne C. Freeze” P.Geo.
President, CEO and Director
Tel +1 604-689-1957
[email protected]

Agoracom Welcomes Candente Copper with Canariaco Deposit, Included in Goldman Sachs 84 Top Copper Projects Worldwide $ $ $FCX $BHP $

Posted by AGORACOM at 9:18 AM on Thursday, August 6th, 2020


  • Canariaco Included in Goldman Sachs 84 Top Copper Projects Worldwide
    • Cañariaco in Lowest Quartile of Copper Industry Production Costs
    • Definitive Feasibility 50% Complete
    • Higher grade throughput of 0.54% CuEqMill Feed Grade during first 3 years
    • Rising Copper and Gold Prices Impacting 2011 PFS
  • Fortescue Metals Group Ltd. owns 19.92% interest
    • Joint technical committee created to identify optimum strategy for Cañariaco development

Project Highlights:

Cañariaco Norte is a 100% owned feasibility-stage porphyry copper deposit

  • A single, contiguous, open-pit mineable deposit of 7.5B pounds Measured and Indicated,
  • 1.4B pounds Inferred Porphyry Copper Deposit
  • Annual production of 262,000,000lbs of copper, 39,000 oz gold & 911,000 oz silver over initial mine life of 22 yrs(@ 95,000 tpd)

Pre-Feasibility Study

  • NPV of US $922M and IRR of 17.3% (using US$2.25 copper and an 8% discount rate)
  • Payback of preproduction capital in 4.4 years (after-tax)
  • Copper Production of 262,000,000 pounds per year
  • Initial Mine life of 22 years+
  • Throughput rate of 95,000 tonnes per day
  • Operating costs of US$0.988 per pound of copper (including onsite/offsite costs, taxes and byproduct credits)
  • Minimal infrastructure required, excellent locations for all site facilities, close to existing highway (42km away) and power grid (57km away) & abundant water at site
  • Very strong community & regional support

The Cañariaco Norte Copper Project

  • Canariaco in Top 80 Deposits slated for Development according to Goldman Sachs
    • 42 in South America –Cañariaco Included
    • Cañariaco in Lowest Quartile of Copper Industry Production Costs
  • Large scale porphyry copper–gold-silver deposit in Northern Peru
  • 7.5B pounds Measured and Indicated, plus 1.4B pounds Inferred Porphyry Copper Deposit
  • Deposit and Scope of Project Development well defined by Pre-Feasibility Studies in 2011
  • Annual production of 262,000,000lbs of copper, 39,000 oz gold & 911,000 oz silver over initial mine life of 22 yrs(@ 95,000 tpd)
  • Operating costs of US$0.988 per pound of copper (including onsite/offsite costs, taxes and byproduct credits
  • Strong Government support

Resource and Mine Plan

123 Million tonnes @ 0.58% Cu Eq (0.4% Cu cutoff) Measured

752 Million tonnes @ 0.52% Cu Eq (0.3% Cu cutoff) M & Indicated

1.0 Billion tonnes @ 0.46% Cu Eq(0.2% Cu cutoff) M & I

Current Mine Plan 728.2 Million tonnes @ 0.46% CuEqMill Feed Grade

  • Higher grade throughput of 0.54% CuEqMill Feed Grade during first 3 years

Canariaco Price Sensitivities Chart

  • Rising Copper and Silver Prices dramatically Project Economics
  • Based on 2011 Pre-Feasibility Progress Report

Gratomic Inc $ Provides Update on Construction of Commercial Scale Graphite Processing Plant and Exploration Activities at Aukam Mine, Namibia $ $ $ $ $

Posted by AGORACOM at 9:41 AM on Friday, May 3rd, 2019

  • The Company has been advancing the Graphite Project on three fronts
  • Exploration and diamond drilling
  • Construction of on-site offices, laboratory, and living quarters,
  • Construction of a commercial scale graphite processing plant capable of producing 20,000 tonnes of concentrate per year,

TORONTO, May 3, 2019 /CNW/ – Gratomic Inc. (“Gratomic” or the “Company”) (TSX-V: GRAT) (CB81–FRANKFURT) a vertically integrated graphite to graphene, advanced materials development company is pleased to provide an update from its Aukam Graphite Mine in Namibia. The Company has been advancing the Graphite Project on three fronts focusing on exploration and diamond drilling, construction of on-site offices, laboratory, and living quarters, and the construction of a commercial scale graphite processing plant. The commercial scale graphite plant, capable of producing in excess of 20,000 tonnes of graphite concentrate per year, will replace the existing pilot plant commissioned in 2018 which successfully produced 5.5 tonnes of graphite concentrate grading between 88%-96% Carbon as Graphite (“Cg”).

The Aukam Graphite Project is located in southern Namibia close to the port city of Luderitz. The property hosts five underground adits which were mined periodically between 1940 and 1974.  Graphite mineralization at Aukam is of the vein or lump type and occurs as massive lenses and veins. Graphite has also been observed as minor disseminated patches hosted in variably altered granite.

2018 Exploration

During 2018, Gratomic contracted Gregory Symons Geophysics (GSG) to perform Horizontal Loop Electromagnetics (HLEM) and magnetic surveys in continuation of previous geophysical surveys undertaken in 2016/2017.  The original survey was performed in the vicinity of the Aukam Mine marked by the black polygon in Figure1 below.  During the 2018 geophysical survey, ground electromagnetic and magnetic surveys were completed in two areas identified as Grid 1, which lies East of the Aukam Mine, and a portion Grid 2 as indicated in purple, known as Snyman Graphite Occurrence (see Figure 1).

Figure 1 showing 2016 survey in black, Grid 1 & Grid 2 completed in 2018, Grid 3 proposed for 2019 (CNW Group/Gratomic)

Grid 1 adjoins the previous survey over the mine area at Aukam and extends the strike length covered to 1.6 kilometres to the East. Significant interpretations pertaining to Grid 1 include:

  • Graphite identified at surface occurs both as massive graphite veins and widespread disseminated graphite over an area of 550 metres east-west by 190 metres north- south,
  • Surface graphite showings are located sub-parallel to known electromagnetic anomalies,
  • Electromagnetic anomalies extend those depicted by the original survey by approximately 550 metres,
  • Current strike length of anomaly now stands at 1.3 kilometres,
  • Distinct drill targets have been identified along the trend (see Figure 2),
  • Surveyed area appears to be under rather shallow sand cover,
  • Prospective areas identified are conducive to surface trenching.
Figure 2 showing the interpretation overlain on  the Grid 1 Analytic Signal Map. Conductors C1 to C5 interpreted as possible graphitic mineralization. The best EM anomaly is C1 and trenching and drilling is recommended on Line 1340 (CNW Group/Gratomic)

Grid 2 of the completed geophysical survey covers the Snyman graphite occurrence in the northeastern portion of EPL3895. The Snyman graphite occurrence covers an area of 7.5 ha and lies approximately 6.5 kilometres east of the Aukam mine.

Significant interpretations pertaining to Grid 2 include:

  • Graphitic interpreted mineralization is depicted by a predominant EM anomaly in the northwest part of the grid extending over 150 metres,
  • A second weaker EM further to the east extends over 600 metres is thought to be associated with graphite mineralization in the area
  • The grid area appears to be covered with thin overburden,
  • Areas have been identified as prospective areas conducive to surface trenching (see Figure 3)
Figure 3 showing the interpretation overlain on the Grid 2 Analytical Signal Map. Conductor C1 is interpreted as possible graphitic mineralization. The best EM anomaly is at C1a and trenching is recommended here on Line 1030 (CNW Group/Gratomic)

During 2018 Gratomic was granted additional Exclusive Prospecting License, Number 6710 (EPL 6710) by the Namibian Ministry of Mines and Energy, with an initial exclusivity of three years.  The license area is contiguous with EPL 3895, which covers the Aukam graphite deposit and the Snyman graphite occurrence (see Figure 4). The application for EPL 6710 was submitted in order to cover the potential strike extension of the Snyman graphite occurrence to the east. In addition, EPL 6710 covers an additional area considered prospective for graphite within the “Aukam window” where rocks hosting the Aukam and Snyman graphite are exposed beneath the regional unconformity at the base of the Nama Group sedimentary rocks. The addition of the new EPL increases the area of prospective geology covered to 63,072 hectares (630 square kilometres). 

Figure 4 showing Exclusive Prospecting License EPL 3895 & EPL 6710 (CNW Group/Gratomic)

Regional exploration in 2018 included mapping and sampling of graphite occurrences throughout the Company’s license areas with emphasis on the 400 hectares encompassing both the Snyman graphite occurrence and the area east of the Aukam Mine. Compilation, interpretation and presentation of all available geologic data allowed for subsequent diamond drill targeting with initial drilling planned for the area immediately east of the existing underground workings of the Aukam Mine. 

Figure 5 Geologic Map Grid 2 – Snyman Farm Area (CNW Group/Gratomic)
Photo 1 Looking East over Process Site (CNW Group/Gratomic)

Diamond Drilling

Two company drills were deployed to Aukam in March 2019 with diamond drilling commencing in April.  The company is currently operating a Longyear 38 with a 2-cylinder XY-1 drill for a backup.  Initial targets being drilled are proximal to the Aukam Mine and are spaced at 25 metres with infill drill planned to follow based on results. Five holes have been completed at the time of this release.

Photo 2 High grade vein-type graphitic seam (CNW Group/Gratomic)
Photo 3 Longyear-38 Diamond Drill (CNW Group/Gratomic)
Photo 4 XY-1 Diamond Drill (CNW Group/Gratomic)
Figure 6 Phase 1 Diamond Drilling – East of Aukam Mine (CNW Group/Gratomic)

Processing Plant

During 2018 Gratomic completed the construction and start-up of its’ prototype processing plant to test and refine the processes that will be used for commercial production. The Aukam processing plant uses a simple crushing, grinding and flotation system. Graphite feed for the prototype plant was obtained from screening and sorting of existing stockpiles from historical mining. The processing plant operated for 26 days during April and for all 31 days in May of 2018. While operational, data was collected at each phase of the process and test results from samples were sent to Gecko labs with the subsequent results used to optimize plant processes. The following tests and optimization were conducted:

  • Liberation analysis
  • Flake size distribution analysis
  • Mixing velocity optimization
  • Screen size analysis and optimization
  • Air flow analysis in columns and optimization
  • Drying analysis and optimization
  • Silica dispersant ratio optimization
  • Reagent optimization
  • Product flow rate optimization
  • Grade optimization
  • Staff recruitment, training, and man-hour analysis
  • Economic sensitivity analysis on pilot processing facility
  • Feed stock optimization and process

The Company continued to optimize the pilot plant processing stockpiled graphite mineralization throughout 2018. To date, the plant has processed 9 tonnes of the graphite mineralization with 5.5 tonnes of graphite concentrate grading between 88% and 96% Cg shipped to Perpetuus Carbon Technologies (“Perpetuus”) for the manufacture of graphene to be used in the automobile and bicycle tire industry. Graphene made from Aukam graphite continues to be tested in Europe and Asia with good results.

Gratomic and Perpetuus are currently in collaboration to build on Perpetuus’ capability to produce high quality surface modified graphene in support of the anticipated volumes required by the tire manufacturing industry. Additional applications that have now been generated in a preproduction format include radiant heating membranes and super hydrophobic coatings with an addressable market that include; graphene inks, marine, oil & gas, power generation, industrial (repair & maintenance), infrastructure (new build) and automotive & transportation among others.

Plant Expansion

Plant expansion to increase capacity to 20,000 tonne per annum began in2018. Initial activities included construction of a platform for drying graphite product and of a washing bay for equipment, complete with a containment system to collect impacted water. Steel drying pans, an oven, and two screens were also assembled and successfully tested. Continued upgrades involved the extension of the working area on the pilot plant by another 35 metres to the north-west to accommodate new crushing equipment and conveyer belts.  Analysis of all plant processes continues to optimize efficiencies of each process such as rod mills, flotation columns, and reagent introduction. Four different tests were run with the first test being used as a base line.  Samples were taken from the rod mill feed, mill discharge, and screen under-and-over size.  Calculations were made to determine the amount of chemicals needed to be introduced into the mixers according to the density and volume of the mixer feed.

Recent upgrades to the processing plant continue with the arrival of additional commercial scale equipment including; industrial sized generator, screw conveyors, shaker screens, rod mill, conveyors, and boom truck.

Photo 5 showing commercial scale rod mill, screeners and conveyance systems (CNW Group/Gratomic)

Gratomic is continuing with its systematic assembly of the commercial scale graphite processing plant.  Next steps will include:

  • Completion of the pilot acid wash. This circuit will be used to collect engineering data to design the commercial scale plant. This is an addition to the plant that will allow the company to produce upwards of 98.5% graphite based on its latest pilot testing results in the lab.
  • Modifications are currently being made to the jaw crusher to allow it to more effectively crush graphite,
  • Rod mill support systems such as maintenance cradles and cranes, rod loading equipment and control systems are currently being engineered,
  • Flotation circuit mass balances are being explored using pilot plant data in order to size the pumps and flow lines of the flotation system,
  • Dewatering circuit equipment are currently being specified,
  • Water conditioning systems are currently being designed to allow close to 100% recycle of water. This includes pH control, removal of fine suspended solids and removal of dissolved iron,
  • Control systems are being designed for each sub-circuit of the commercial scale plant.

Camp Construction

Construction of the onsite Management Camp consisting of offices, laboratory, kitchen, and living quarters, is ongoing.  Work began with two of the larger structures during Q4/2018.

Photo 6 portion of site office structures under Namibia night sky (CNW Group/Gratomic)

Qualified Persons

Steve Gray, P.Geo. has reviewed, prepared and approved the scientific and technical information in this press release and is Gratomic Inc’s “Qualified Person” as defined by National Instrument 43-101 – Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects.

About Gratomic Inc.

Gratomic is an advanced materials company focused on mine to market commercialization of graphite products most notably high value graphene-based components for a range of mass market products. We are collaborating with a leading European manufacturer of graphene to use Aukam graphite to manufacture graphene products for commercialization on an industrial scale. The company is listed on the TSX Venture Exchange under the symbol GRAT. 

“Neither TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.”