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Hazer Group Ltd produces over 1 kilogram of synthetic graphite

Geoff Pocock, managing director, commented: “We are delighted to have made significant progress in scaling and optimising the Hazer Process and generating high purity graphite concentrates as direct reaction products."
Hazer Group Ltd produces over 1 kilogram of synthetic graphite
Hazer has produced synthetic graphite.

Hazer Group Ltd (ASX:HZR) is making progress in the ongoing scale up and development work at its laboratory based at the University of Sydney.

The Hazer Process enables the effective conversion of natural gas and similar feedstocks, into hydrogen and high quality graphite, using iron ore as a process catalyst.

Hazer has successfully increased the operating scale of the Hazer Process, and has successfully produced over 1 kilogram of synthetic graphite in a single batch.

This demonstrates the scalability of the process, having successfully increased in capacity by 3,400x in 8 months.

Geoff Pocock, managing director, commented: “We are delighted to have made significant progress in scaling and optimising the Hazer Process and generating high purity graphite concentrates as direct reaction products.

“These results show the clear and compelling benefits that are available to both graphite and hydrogen users through the Hazer process over other production processes.”


Commercial analysis

Hazer has completed modelling of the performance and cost of the process in a commercial plant operating context.

Preliminary results were high encouraging and suggest Hazer has the potential to offer very low cost hydrogen and graphite products under a range of feedstock costs and secondary product revenues.


Process improvements

Hazer has further demonstrated substantial improvements in raw graphite purity now generating graphite with raw purity of 95%, up from 86%.

Improvements to the existing reactor design have allowed better control of the gas distribution and more effective catalyst fluidisation.

These improvements to the system have led to the higher yields and a greater reaction longevity.

Further results have also shown that Hazer’s current single stage purification process does not deteriorate the graphite crystallinity and morphology.


Background

The Hazer Process is a product of 8+ years of research and significant expenditure at UWA. After the process demonstrated initial success, Hazer Group was established in 2010 to commercialise the technology.

Hazer listed in November 2015 through an IPO.

After listing, the company completed a development partnership arrangement with the University of Sydney for scale up development work. Since listing, a new collaboration agreement was also signed with UWA, to develop the Hazer technology for production of graphene.

A partnership with Kemplant will see a demonstration plant constructed and commissioned following the completion of development work currently underway at University of Sydney.

Hazer retains 100% of the intellectual property rights to the Hazer Process through its various agreements with UWA, University of Sydney and Kemplant.


Analysis

These results indicate that Hazer has an opportunity to target three major global markets by offering a low cost product for the global graphite and hydrogen industries - as well as offering a low emission hydrogen-based energy solution.

In conjunction with making key advances in the underlying scale up process using large lab reactors, the company is now working towards the design and construction of a pre-pilot plant.

The facility is expected to be commissioned in early 2017. 

This plant is a key precursor to the ongoing design of Hazer’s pilot plant, that is targeting production levels of over 100 kilograms of combined hydrogen and graphite products per day.

Shares in Hazer have doubled year to date, currently trading at $0.54.

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