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Sovereign Metals Ltd (ASX:SVM), which is developing the Kasiya rutile-graphite project in Malawi, has kicked another goal on its scoresheet, with downstream test work showing potential yields of high-quality graphite and few residual impurities from the deposit.

Sovereign is aiming to produce a commercially viable graphite concentrate for use in the lithium-battery sector, as well as moving towards a definitive feasibility study (DFS) for production of both rutile and graphite from the project, following up a prefeasibility study (PFS) completed in September last year.

In the recently completed test work – undertaken by independent consultancy ProGraphite GmbH (ProGraphite) in Germany – spherical purified graphite (SPG) with exceedingly low levels of impurities was produced within ‘world leading specifications’.

The spheronisation process achieved yields of up to 68 percent, with indications that this could be further optimised in later work, and in terms of impurities, the loss-on-ignition was 99.99%.

Sovereign Metals managing director Frank Eagar said the test work provided promising indicators of what Kasiya – whose resource comprises 17.9 million tonnes contained rutile and 24.4 million tonnes contained graphite – could mean within the global graphite market.

“These results clearly demonstrate that Kasiya has the potential to disrupt the China dominated graphite supply chain as a long term, secure source of high quality
graphite ex-China,” he said.

“We believe Kasiya graphite will have industry low operating costs and is also one of the
largest graphite resources globally holding a significant advantage over its graphite peers.

“We are very pleased to achieve these outstanding results at this stage of the program and will continue fast tracking our graphite product development and qualification campaign.”

According to the September 2023 PFS, Kasiya could become one of the world’s largest and lowest cost producers of natural rutile and natural graphite with a comparably lower carbon footprint, and a 25 year mine life, with both rutile and graphite produced over two development stages.

Sovereign Metals has been trading at 51 cents.

SVM by the numbers
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