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Testwork triggers Burke project study for Lithium Energy

Updated: Apr 30

Lithium Energy’s Burke graphite project is in north-west Queensland. Credit: File

Lithium Energy has received positive testwork results from its Burke graphite project in Queensland, prompting it to launch a pre-feasibility study (PFS) into producing battery anode material at the site.

Testing in China by the Beijing General Research Institute for Mining and Metallurgy (BGRIMM) achieved graphite concentrate grades of more than 96 per cent total graphitic carbon (TGC) using standard flotation methods to upgrade Burke graphite to battery-grade material. The company says overall graphite recoveries using closed-loop testing by BGRIMM also confirmed excellent recovery rates of more than 85 per cent.

The results led Lithium Energy to appoint Wave International and Measured Group to conduct its PFS and define the requirements for a vertically-integrated purified spherical graphite manufacturing plant using feedstock from its Burke project.

Management says Wave is a well-known and highly-qualified engineering consulting service provider with extensive experience in graphite concentration and battery anode material plant design, while Measured will conduct the mine and pit design components of the study.

We are very pleased to have secured the engineering services of Wave International and the Measured Group to undertake our Burke Graphite PFS. We are confident that this PFS will demonstrate that Burke can deliver a successful, vertically integrated and environmentally sustainable business manufacturing high value battery anode material right here in Australia. Lithium Energy executive chairman William Johnson

Just last month, the company reported a 50 per cent increase to its flagship Burke deposit with an updated JORC mineral resource of 9.1 million tonnes at 14.4 per cent TGC, for a total of 1.3 million tonnes at a 5 per cent cut-off grade. The indicated JORC mineral resource is 4.5 million tonnes at 14.7 per cent TGC for 670,000 tonnes contained graphite and the inferred resource is 4.6 million tonnes at 14.2 per cent TGC for 640,000 tonnes contained graphite.

Management says its nearby Corella prospect offers the potential to add to the overall graphite inventory of the Burke project and may provide it with expanded development options.

Lithium Energy enjoys exposure to two of today’s most important critical minerals used in the transition to a low-carbon economy – lithium and graphite. Both are highly sought-after for the role they play in the manufacture of lithium-ion batteries.

The company says its Burke graphite project is well-positioned to take advantage of the expected massive growth in demand for battery anode material, given the exceptionally high grade of its deposit, its metallurgical characteristics and the favourable location in north-west Queensland.

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