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How this Company Plans to Meet the Growing Need for Graphite

Stockhouse Editorial
5 Comments| March 5, 2021

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The demand for graphite is expected to soar. According to The International Energy Agency, in four years, the world will see around 125 million electric vehicles on the road. Electric vehicles need graphite to produce the anode of lithium-ion batteries. For companies like Gratomic Inc. (TSXV: GRAT, OTCQB: CBULF, Forum), this is welcome news.

Gratomic is an advanced materials company focused on low-cost mines to market the commercialization of carbon-neutral, eco-friendly, high purity vein graphite.

In this exclsuive Q&A interview, Stockhouse Editorial met up with Gratomic President and CEO Arno Brand updated investors on what the company is working on in 2021.


SH: What is Gratomic Inc.’s primary focus?

AB: Gratomic is in the process of commercializing its Aukam vein graphite asset in Namibia with the intent of becoming a leading supplier of battery grade graphite compounds required in the manufacturing of lithium-ion batteries to meet the growing global demand for energy storage and electric vehicles.

SH: What is the problem that faces the graphite market that is at the same time an opportunity for Gratomic Inc.?

Click to enlargeAB: There's an increased shortage of quality, high-grade natural graphite. China has recently become a net importer of graphite, where they used to be a net exporter. This was brought on by environmental awareness of graphite miners on mainland China, this coming at a period, of course, where global demand for battery grade graphite has been amplified by the increase in demand of electric vehicles, Gratomic’s Aukam graphite project intends to make available high-quality high-grade natural graphite compounds suitable for use to the electric vehicle batteries.

SH: What are the differences between vein, flake, and amorphous graphite, and what makes Gratomic’s Aukam vein graphite so desirable?

AB: The three different classes of graphite refer to how these deposits form. The vein graphite is probably the highest form of natural carbon that you find in the Earth’s crust. As far as Aukam goes, it's a vein graphite project with grades of graphite ranging from 42 to 80% carbon, making it extremely desirable and easily processable into a commercial product, whereas other projects around the world require additional processing, including acid and heat treatment to achieve to the desired grade.

SH: In 2020, there was a limited supply of 5,000 tonnes of vein graphite available in the market. How will Gratomic change the global landscape for vein graphite?

AB: Currently, Gratomic is developing a 20,000 ton per annum processing facility on-site at its Aukam graphite project. This increases world production by about 400% once the facility been completely commissioned.

SH: You are currently in the final phases of development on your Flagship Aukam graphite project. Can you elaborate on that?

AB: Right now, the company is in an exciting phase where it is completing the last pieces of construction required to enter into the commissioning phase. We'll start testing sections of the processing plant and getting it ready for production.

SH: One of the things your company also prioritizes is having a nearly negligible carbon footprint. Can you tell me more about that?

AB: In a world where a cleaner tomorrow matters, from day one, our company has focused its efforts on creating an energy-efficient processing plant that optimizes the energy requirement for graphite. Our entire energy requirement on site right now is about 500 kilowatt which is about half a megawatt an hour, which is considerably less than the average graphite project on the planet today – they’re normally looking at a grid requirement of about three to six megawatts.

SH: How large is Gratomic’s strategic focus in the EV battery market and how will Gratomic become a strategic player in the EV battery supply chain?

AB: The company's main focus is to become a key supplier of graphite battery compounds to battery manufacturers around the world. To date, Gratomic has reached out to 53 of those manufacturers. We plan vertically integrate into the value chain as the Company becomes going concern.

SH: What is graphene and why is it an important secondary focus for Gratomic Inc.?

AB: The world has entered into what will be known as “the Carbon Age.” Graphene is a single allotrope of carbon, isolated from graphite. There are key property enhancements that it offers as a nanofiller material, including extremely high textile strength, elevated thermal conductivity, and enhanced electrical conductivity, those result in an elevation of physical and material properties. Gratomic has invested a vast amount of its resources and partnerships in developing its graphene application and intends to pursue various commercial avenues of integration once the company has commercialized.

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FULL DISCLOSURE: This is a paid article produced by Stockhouse Publishing.

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