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- Black Canyon Limited has received highly encouraging results from initial sighter test work conducted on manganese oxide samples producing Manganese Sulphate from Flanagan Bore.
- As per BCA, this confirms the potential to produce High-Purity Manganese Sulphate Monohydrate (HPMSM) suitable for the battery manufacturing industries.
- Initial leach tests resulted in an extraction rate of 91%, from which high-grade Manganese Sulphate crystals containing 32.3% Mn have been produced, equivalent to >99% Manganese Sulphate purity.
- As part of the overall strategy, the Company is advancing Scoping Level leaching, purification and crystallising testwork programs. This is for the potential production of HPMSM as a precursor material for cathodes to be used in the rising EV battery market.
Australian manganese explorer Black Canyon Limited (ASX:BCA) has received ‘highly encouraging results’ from its initial manganese sulphate crystallisation testwork conducted on the manganese oxide samples from Flanagan Bore.
This success of the crystallisation follows the leaching testwork for the Flanagan Bore Project. The initial leach tests had yielded an extraction rate of 91%, from which high-grade Manganese Sulphate crystals containing 32.3% Mn have been produced, equivalent to >99% Manganese Sulphate purity.
This is what Executive Director, Brendan Cummins, said about the initial testwork results:
© 2022 Kalkine Media®, Source: Company update dated 5 Dec 2022
These highly promising manganese sulphate results have underpinned the company’s strategy to produce HPMSM.
The HPMSM strategy will now be developed further with more detailed Scoping Level leaching, purification and crystallisation testwork in a bid to produce ‘potential’ battery-grade manganese sulphate in the upcoming months.
The company tested a ‘global’ manganese oxide composite from across the LR1 and FB3 deposits of the Flanagan Bore Project.
Leach testwork: The initial leach tests were conducted on fines of manganese concentrate composites produced from the previous beneficiation testwork.
The initial leaching testwork was aimed at establishing the leaching amenability of manganese oxide ores in order to determine extraction kinetics.
Mn leachate from the initial testwork using manganese oxide ore, Source: Company update dated 05 Dec 2022
Manganese sulphate crystallisation testwork: A concentrated pregnant leachate solution, which was derived from the aforementioned leaching testwork, was then neutralised, filtered and treated in order to get rid of excess calcium.
The resulting manganese-enriched filtrate was then evaporated, following which the crystals recovered were dried and analysed.
Manganese Sulphate from Flanagan Bore containing 32.3% Mn, Source: Company update dated 05 Dec 2022
Crystallisation testwork results: Upon chemically analysing the recovered manganese sulphate crystals, a Mn grade of 32.3% was achieved, equivalent to a manganese sulphate purity of >99%.
This has shown that a high-grade manganese sulphate product can be produced. The sighter result shows the suitability of manganese oxide ores to generate ‘downstream’ manganese products potentially suitable for battery-related cathode active materials and agricultural applications, says the Company.
As per BCA learnings from the initial leach and crystallisation tests can be applied to further ongoing detailed leaching, purification and crystallisation testwork to support the HPMSM Scoping Study.
The Company is advancing this second stage of a hydrometallurgical testwork program while preparing additional manganese oxide materials from the LR1 and FB3 deposits.
Currently, China dominates the High Purity Manganese market with more than 90% of worldwide production.
However, security and diversification of supply outside of China is being sought primarily for the car manufacturing industries in America and Europe.
The US Government has a critical mineral list that the Biden Administration identified as critical for domestic energy, electronics and defence which includes manganese.
The Inflation Reduction Act, recently approved by the US Government, and the Free Trade Agreement between the US and Australia allow for direct investment by the USA into Australian critical mineral projects. Further as per BCA, EV and clean energy industries will be considerably incentivised to establish operations in the US.
The rapid expansion of the manganese sulphate market beyond the bounds of China will prove beneficial to Black Canyon, says the company.
The company says that pursuing HPMSM production can materially enhance the already-positive economics of their project portfolio while contributing towards emissions reduction through transition to EVs.
BCA shares were trading AU$0.250 a share as on 08 Dec 2022.
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