Oakville, Ontario’s Saint Jean Carbon Inc. (TSXV:SJL) has been invited by the National Research Council of Canada (NRC) to participate as part of a special interest group that will develop and propose standards for graphene made by exfoliation methods from natural graphite.
Saint Jean Carbon is a carbon science company engaged in exploration for natural graphite properties and related carbon products, with interest in graphite mining claims in Quebec.
The company has been researching technology applications for graphite in lithium-ion batteries since 2007.
“We are very honoured to be included as one of the companies the NRC will be working with on this initiative,” said Saint Jean Carbon CEO Paul Ogilvie. “We feel setting standards that will be used by all graphene producers will make a stronger and more measurable material category, that will be better understood and most importantly allow future users of graphene to distinguish between high quality and low performance.”
In May, Saint Jean Carbon began construction on what will be North America’s first full mill and finishing line for the production of spherical, carbon coated graphite, a type of graphite that is sought after for lithium ion batteries, for the automotive industry among other verticals that require battery technology.
The mill design is modular, so that it can be set up at any battery manufacturing plant, and was developed in collaboration with two universities.
Saint Jean Carbon has filed a number of patents related to the mill, which was designed to produce an average output of 5,000 tonnes per year with less than 5% waste.
The company is presently in negotiations with two battery manufacturers to supply them with suitable graphite.
The highest grade coated spherical graphite can sell for US$1,950 per tonne, according to the company.
For the consultation opportunity with the NRC, the project will be broken into a number of phases, with the first phase set to take approximately one year to complete.
The NRC’s aim is to work with graphene producers to develop standardized methods and to determine the optimal techniques to properly characterize graphene.
In the United States, the Graphene Council, along with a variety of other stakeholders, is working with the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) / International Organization for Standardization (ISO) Technical Committee (TC) 229 Nanotechnologies and the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) TC 113 Standards Development Groups, and is in discussion with the European Union Graphene Flagship on developing formal technical standards for graphene materials.
UBC’s Quantum Matter Institute last September announced a breakthrough in making graphene into an enhanced superconducting material, with important implications for nanoelectronics which have the potential to usher in a whole new era of electronic design.