NEW Armadale Mahenge Liandu
Armadale's Mahenge Liandu graphite project. Image courtesy of Armadale

AIM-listed Armadale Capital has appointed an experienced Beijing-based marketing consultant to pursue offtake agreements ahead of an anticipated decision to mine at the Mahenge Liandu graphite project in Tanzania in early 2019.

Armadale Capital has also made significant progress on the 2018 field work programme underway at Mahenge Liandu. With the feasibility study now well advanced and test work underpinning the strong commercial applications of the project’s graphite concentrate, Armadale Capital has appointed Beijing-based marketing consultant Jenny Lee as a consultant to the company.

Lee, who is the current MD of Jialin International Trading, Hong Kong, will manage offtake discussions in Beijing, which will be co-ordinated alongside test-work from the recently completed diamond drilling and metallurgical programmes.

Prior to her current role she served as divisional manager of the mineral resources division of AVIC International Steel Trade – one of the largest trading companies in China in the iron, coal and manganese sector importing into the Chinese market.

Metallurgical test work

Metallurgical test work completed on graphite from Mahenge Liandu indicates that exceptional purity can be achieved alongside excellent flake size distribution, making the product highly amenable to a range of commercial applications.

Results from a simple conventional flowsheet produced grades well above the standard 95% purity for most size fractions, while downstream test work on concentrates showed excellent expandability particularly of the larger size fractions.

Test work to further enhance the purity of the graphite concentrate showed that acid treatment readily upgrades the concentrate further to above the 99.95% purity required for the rapidly expanding lithium-ion battery market.

“Mahenge Liandu continues to exceed all internal expectations – with wide intervals of high-grade, and exceptionally high-grade, mineralisation identified from surface, we are confident that we will be able to demonstrate a long-life, low-cost mining operation,” says Armadale director Nick Johansen.

“Looking at our commercial potential, our scoping study released earlier this year sets the scene for what our project might look like and be capable of – including delivering average production of 49 000 tpa of graphite products during a 32-year life of mine at a low operating cost of US$408/t.”

The feasibility study is now well advanced with targeted publication in Q4 2018.

“We look forward to moving through the final phases of our development process and remain focused on being in a position to make a decision to mine, and begin the construction phase in 2019,” says Johansen.