Kibaran Resources has completed a scoping study for a battery grade graphite manufacturing facility at its Epanko property in Tanzania.

Last month, the company completed a bankable feasibility study confirming the viability of a conventional open cut mine and conventional flotation processing facility at the Epanko graphite project.

Key results from the battery grade graphite scoping study include capital expenditure of $35m, pre-tax NPV of $115m, IRR of 51% and payback of 1.9 years.

The production of first battery grade spherical graphite is due to start 12 to 18 months into project’s first stage expanded production.

Stage one production is expected to start at 15,000 tonnes per annum (tpa), increasing to 50,000tpa over three stages, producing spherical, expanded and other purified graphite products.

Kibaran has started negotiations with strategic industry partners to jointly fund the feasibility study and capital expenditure via direct investment into the project.

The company has incorporated TanzGraphite Technologies for ownership of the manufacturing and processing of purified graphite products.

Kibaran Resources managing director Andrew Spinks said: "The completion of the Epanko BFS now provides the Company with certainty to position itself to become part of the global graphite supply chain and secure strategic partnerships for the battery grade Spherical Graphite market.

"The planned Gigafactories associated with the emerging electric vehicle and Energy Storage System will have a significant impact on graphite demand."