Great Lakes Graphite Inc. ("GLK" or the "Company") today announced that commissioning of the Matheson Micronization Facility located in Matheson, Ontario is now in progress. An electrical safety inspection was conducted this week on the recently completed work at the Matheson plant.
Pursuant to the successful inspection, the Company is now enabled to begin energizing the Facility which will, in turn, enable the company to commission the micronization equipment and prepare for commercial production. All Facility permits are now in place in addition to the human resources necessary to begin operations at the plant.
Upon completion of commissioning, Great Lakes Graphite will begin producing value added micronized natural flake graphite products as well as micronized synthetic graphite products. These products are targeted at a number of industries and markets including grease, lubricating fluids, drilling fluids, brake pads and battery components. Pricing for micronized flake graphite products is anticipated to be in the range of US$2500-3000 per tonne.
Jerry Janik, Great Lakes Graphite COO said, "The work that was recently performed on the building's electrical systems to enable the restoration of power underwent an inspection earlier this week by the regulatory authority. We have initiated commissioning activities in conjunction with powering up the facility. Over the coming days, we will work together with our partners to confirm that the facility is operating to specification. We will begin scheduling production runs shortly after completion of commissioning."
Great Lakes Graphite CEO Paul Gorman said, "We have eagerly anticipated this milestone since we initiated work on the project. The speed with which we were able to achieve this significant accomplishment is a testament to the high quality of our people, our plan and our partners. We are very grateful to the community of Matheson for the support that they have shown for this initiative and to the First Nations and Metis groups with which we have consulted. We are working very hard to insure that the benefits of our growing business extend beyond the four walls of this company and are shared by the surrounding community. Toward that end we have also initiated a number of efforts to work with regional educational institutions to create real world applied learning opportunities for students as well as availing ourselves of important resources that have been made available to emerging businesses. From a Canadian perspective, we believe that these steps we are taking today are setting the stage for Canada to become a significant player in the supply chain for batteries for new applications such as electric vehicles and grid storage."
About the Matheson Micronization Facility: The Matheson Micronization Facility has been maintained since its closure in 2004 and is in compliance with all environmental and regulatory requirements. Great Lakes Graphite's capital expenditure program will significantly improve graphite upgrading processes while taking advantage of its substantial existing infrastructure resources. The existing infrastructure not only provides Great Lakes Graphite with a substantial capital expense savings, but also has significantly shortened the time required to initiate commercial operations. When operating at targeted capacity, it is estimated that the Matheson Micronization Facility will process approximately 10,000 tonnes of high-carbon graphite concentrate per year.
About Great Lakes Graphite: Great Lakes Graphite Inc. is an industrial minerals company focussed on bringing value-added carbon products to a well-defined market.
The Company's Innovation Division has entered into long-term agreements for use of the Matheson Micronization Facility and for supply of high quality natural graphite concentrate (see news release dated 03/23/15) which are positioning Great Lakes Graphite to become an emerging domestic manufacturer and supplier of micronized products to a growing regional customer base where pricing and demand continue to rise.