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Lithium Energy tables maiden Corella graphite resource

Updated: Apr 30

Lithium Energy has doubled its graphite stocks after tabling a maiden mineral resource at its Corella project in Queensland. Credit: File

Lithium Energy has doubled its total graphite inventory after tabling a maiden resource for its Corella project of 13.5 million tonnes at 9.5 per cent total graphitic carbon (TGC) for 1.3 million tonnes contained graphite.

The latest figure builds on the company’s stocks at its Burke project that holds 9.1 million tonnes grading 14.4 TGC for 1.3 million tonnes of contained graphite, giving the explorer a total of 2.6 million tonnes contained graphite.

Corella’s resource was determined through a 16-hole reverse-circulation (RC) definition drilling campaign across 1569m. Holes were sampled at 1m intervals with mineralisation constrained using a 5 per cent TGC cutoff.

Lithium Energy says its deposit can be mined using open-pit techniques and believes its natural flake graphite can be processed by standard flotation, spheronisation and purification technologies to an international standard.

The company has been steadily building its graphite resource across its Queensland projects. In April, it updated its Burke JORC mineral resource estimate tonnage to 9.1 million tonnes from 6.3 million tonnes and the contained graphite total rose by about 30 per cent to 1.3 million tonnes.

It has been more than six years since the Burke project delivered its maiden mineral resource and even back then in 2017, the resource was lauded as one of the world’s highest-grade natural graphite deposits.

The Burke and Corella tenements total about 26 square kilometres in the Cloncurry region of North Central Queensland and boast access to some useful transport infrastructure.

Corella is 40km west of Cloncurry near a highway that links Mt Isa to the port of Townsville. Burke sits 125km north of Cloncurry and counts Novonix’s Mt Dromedary graphite project as a neighbour.

The major increase in our graphite inventory contributed from the Corella Project adds significant value to the overall Burke Graphite Project. In particular, the additional resource provides the Company with the potential for expanded development options for our proposed vertically integrated battery anode material manufacturing facility based in Queensland. Lithium Energy executive chairman William Johnson

Following “excellent” metallurgical testwork results last month, the company is forging ahead with a prefeasibility study on an Australian-based battery anode material production business that it expects to complete sometime this year. Management recently appointed Wave International to conduct the study in conjunction with Measured Group.

The company’s proposed manufacturing facility in Queensland would use bulk graphite-flake concentrate produced from its Burke and Corella deposits as feedstock. Metallurgical testwork has already confirmed the potential for purified spherical graphite – a battery anode precursor material – to be produced from Burke using environmentally-sustainable processes.

Lithium Energy is on the right track to achieve the required battery anode specifications. Testwork completed by the Beijing General Institute of Mining and Metallurgy has attained concentrates grading greater than 96 per cent TGC graphite-flake concentrate, which will be suitable as feedstock for the purified spherical graphite plant.

The company’s next step will include metallurgical testwork to assess Corella’s graphite as potential additional feedstock for its planned purified spherical graphite production facility in Queensland.

In recent times, graphite has been thrown about as potentially being the world’s “next lithium” … and management from Infinity Lithium will be keen for the speculation to become reality.

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