Nouveau Monde Graphite Inc. completed a front-end loading engineering analysis (FEL-1) for Phase 2 of its large-scale commercial lithium-ion anode material project in Bécancour, Québec, Canada. It said it will continue to execute its strategy of becoming the Western World’s largest producer of high-quality anode materials to be used mainly in batteries for electrical vehicles and renewable energy storage. As it expands, Nouveau Monde said it will also preserve its firm commitment to carbon neutrality.

“Nouveau Monde is firmly on its way to become one of the world’s most important anode materials producers, delivering high-quality anode materials from our sophisticated processing and beneficiation plants in Bécancour,” Chairman Arne H. Frandsen. “Our successful upstream integration with our Matawinie mineral project is designed to ensure that we have access to the right quality feedstock for decades to come.”

It has announced Phase 2 of the project, with a projected low-operating cost profile.

“Our significant forecast incremental annual operating profit potential is a testimony that it is possible to embrace sustainable development and profitability to the benefit of all stakeholders,” Frandsen said.

Nouveau Monde has acquired a 200,000-m2 parcel in the industrial park of Bécancour, adjacent to its Phase 1 plant located within the facilities of Olin Corp. The Phase 1 plant of the Bécancour VAP project is currently under construction, with a planned nameplate capacity of 2 kilotonnes per year (kt/y) of anode material and scheduled to make its first production within 12 months.

The Phase 2 of the Bécancour VAP project is designed to receive approximately 60 kt/y of flake graphite from Nouveau Monde’s own Matawinie mineral project, or from alternative third-party sources of supply deemed suitable, to be transformed into approximately 42 kt/y of anode material, 3 kt/y of purified flakes and 14 ktpa of micronized graphite representing a valuable process byproduct.

The incremental annual operating profit potential of the Phase 2 of the Bécancour VAP project, when at full capacity, is forecast to be up to US$200 million — depending on the retained raw material supply scenario, which will be in addition to the operating profit potential generated by the direct sales to third-party customers of flake graphite produced by the Matawinie mineral project.

Front-end Loading pre-feasibility engineering analysis (FEL-2) is under way with the goal to be completed within 12 months. The current plan provides for the Phase 2 plant to commence commissioning of its first capacity in Q1 2025.