South Star Battery Metals announces successful LiB results from completed cycle testing

South Star Battery Metals Corp., along with its technological partner in the United States (“US Lab”), are pleased to announce the successful final life cycle testing results for over 100 cycles (charging and discharging) in CR2016 LiB coin cells constructed with anode material produced from the Santa Cruz Graphite Project. In separate test work, a highly conductive dispersion was also tested that exceeds current industry standards for conductive coating applications in both energy storage and advanced purity dry film lubrication markets.

South Star’s cycle testing program is complete and exceeded 100 cycles for the LiB cells. One cycle consists of 10 hours of charge and 10 hours of discharge, therefore 100 cycles equal approximately 2,000 hours total. The tests indicate very stable results with approximately 2.2% degradation through 100+ cycles while maintaining reversible capacity on the order of 342 – 345 mAh/g throughout. If these results were projected out, approximately 900 cycles could be achieved before reaching the 20% industry standard cutoff. These results are generally competitive with synthetic graphite and indicates that the Santa Cruz’s battery anode material are excellent quality material that are suitable for a variety of LiB applications including EV markets. Upcoming work includes sample preparation of various downstream products so that the qualification process can begin along with processing flowsheet optimizations and performance validation. (Refer to September 22, 2021 press release for results from initial 75 cycles).

In addition, South Star has successfully completed the production and testing of high purity graphite and premium quality electrically conductive dispersions for a variety of applications including the alkaline battery markets. The Santa Cruz material utilized was harvested from the purified graphite rejects from the spheronization process and confirmed that purified flake graphite from the Santa Cruz project is significantly more conductive than industry-leading material currently in use. With the alkaline battery market producing over 12 billion batteries annually and a global market value in excess of US$7.5B in 2020, this application could potentially develop into a key market for South Star.

“We continue to announce stellar value add testing results that prove the premium quality nature of the deposit while advancing towards production in 2022.” – commented Richard Pearce, President and CEO of South Star – “The final cycle testing with anode materials produced from Santa Cruz concentrates resulted in fantastic performance that approximates the characteristics of synthetic graphite for a broad range of battery applications. In addition, the development of such high-quality conductive dispersions and coatings opens additional value-added markets for our premium graphite. Our material outperformed the leading commercial synthetic graphite products by a considerable margin. Every single alkaline battery manufactured requires graphite, and it is a huge new potential market because of the quality of our concentrates. Premium coatings for alkaline battery cans are currently priced up to $30,000 per tonne. These are excellent outcomes for our program and continue to prove that Santa Cruz can provide a broad array of premium products and bring real value with natural flake graphite to a diversified group of sectors and clients. We have a bright future ahead of us.

Santa Cruz Product Information Bulletins (PIBs) with technical information for the portfolio of products, safety data sheets (SDSs) and marketing materials have been prepared and are being distributed to our existing partners and potential clients. 100-200g samples of a variety of value-add products including micronized and purified graphite, expanded & expandable graphite, dispersions, as well as coated and uncoated SPG are being produced and will be made available for qualification testing.

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