Hydro-Québec and Nouveau Monde Graphite (NMG) have reached a research and licensing agreement that they hope will make Québec a contender in the booming battery business. The government-owned utility Hydro-Québec will assist NMG in developing small-scale mining operations to produce graphite which will be used as anode material for Li-on batteries.
NMG’s graphite operation began with the discovery of high-quality graphite in Saint-Michel-des-Saints, in southern Québec. The company’s current demonstration plant has shown an output of 2,000 tons of graphite flakes over a two-year period. The new agreement will help NMG scale up its mining operations, with a long-term goal of constructing a plant with an output of 100,000 tons of graphene anode material per year. HQ and NMG aim to develop a cost-effective process for converting the raw graphite to high-quality battery material.
“We already expect to create close to 180 regional jobs with our graphite mine and plant for the secondary processing of natural graphite,” said NMG CEO Éric Desaulniers. “This announcement complements our initial project and demonstrates our intention to maximize the spinoffs from Québec graphite, and will probably lead to the creation of new high-quality jobs in this high-tech sector.”
Source: Hydro Québec