Talga Group Ltd [ASX:TLG] today announced the commencement of a graphite trial mine in northern Sweden.
While Talga’s share price was relatively flat today on the news, Talga Group Ltd [ASX:TLG] share price has gained 120% over the last 12 months.
The question is: can this upward trend continue?
Graphite trial mine to commence
Talga announced that it is ready to commence trail mining this month at the Vittangi Graphite Project in northern Sweden.
The trial mine is operating under a three-year permit issued by the Environmental Review Commission in the Norrbotten County Administration Board (CAB).
Under this permit, the trial mine covers the extraction of 25,000 tonnes graphite ore from Talga’s Niska South deposit at Vittangi.
Ore from the trial mine will then be refined into Talnode-C — Talga’s flagship lithium-ion battery anode product for large scale production testing in EV supply chain.
This anode product has been developed over several years by Talga with the main aim to provide a ‘sustainable and European Source’ of anode for battery manufacturers.
The trial mine operations are scheduled to commence in mid-September while currently being in the first phase of the campaign.
Roughly 2,500 tonnes of graphite ore is planned to be extracted before the site is rehabilitated for the Northern Hemisphere winter.
Niska mining applications submitted
Talga has also recently submitted exploitation concession applications over the Niska North, Niska South, and Nunasvaara North deposits for its Vittangi Project.
A December 2020 scoping study highlighted the company’s pathway to produce a total of more than 100,000 tpa of anode material for lithium-ion batteries.
Niska’s environmental permit application will be submitted once an environmental permit is granted for the Nunasvaara South deposit.
It is expected to be granted in mid-2022.
Talga Managing Director Mark Thompson said the ‘graphite anode products created from the ore will help progress Talga’s battery manufacturing customer qualification trials and market testing towards future expanded commercial production.’
Depth extension drilling commenced at Europe’s largest graphite resource
On 30 August, Talga announced that the company commenced depth extension drilling to uncover the hidden potential of Europe’s largest graphite resource at Vittangi, Sweden.
The extension drilling will test under the existing Nunasvaara South, Nunasvaara North, and Niska South graphite JORC 2012 mineral resources.
‘With very strong commercial interest in our range of green graphite battery anodes, and progression towards production outlined in the Vittangi Anode Project DFS, Talga is in a strong position to be a key player in the European battery supply chain.
‘However, it is also clear that expansion is a necessary step.
‘Vittangi is Europe’s largest, highest grade graphite resource and a world leader in low emission battery anode production for electric vehicles.
‘We want to see as much of that graphite in electric vehicles as possible, helping to decarbonise the global economy.’
TLG share price outlook
Talga is speeding up its operations, noting that annual demand from Talga’s customers now exceeds ‘14 times the 19,500tpa Talnode-C production capacity outlined in the Vittangi Anode Project DFS’.
The company also predicts that by 2030, customers demand is expected to increase 50 times the DFS capacity, with 30% of this demand coming from European manufacturers.
Lastly, the major step-up in Talga’s operations is that they are working directly with 11 automotive companies.
These are optimistic developments likely filling shareholders with confidence for Talga’s long-term success.
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