Emerging graphite refining specialist Urbix Resources announces that it has sold its commercial graphite powder milling assets in Mexico to industry leading graphite processor Asbury Carbons. In addition, Asbury Carbons and Urbix have signed a letter of intent which outlines the interests of both companies in pursuing joint venture and other collaborative opportunities surrounding purified flake graphite, energy storage graphite grades, graphene and graphene-like additives.
As of January 15th, Asbury Carbons has acquired 100 percent ownership in Urbix Resources’ natural graphite powder milling facility located outside of Hermosillo, Sonora MX. This milling facility currently produces fine microcrystalline graphite powders often used in steel, refractory, and coating applications.
In addition to the sale of this commercial operation, Asbury and Urbix have signed a Letter of Intent which states interest by both parties to pursue a joint venture or similar business relationships for the highly refined graphite product space. Some of these highly refined products include, but are not limited to, Purified Flake Graphite, Spherical Graphite, and Graphene.
Urbix, which will offer one of the lowest purification costs in the world for achieving lithium-ion battery grades, averaging less than $375/ per tonne to purify to 99.95%+ total graphitic content, is now breaking ground on its new 31,000 square foot production site in Mesa, Arizona. The facility will be capable of processing up to 36,000 metric tonnes annually of high-purity graphite, and will also be one of the largest facilities in the world capable of producing a variety of graphene additives. The Urbix process lacks the use of Hydrofluoric acid and immense energy consumption and is therefore one of the greenest methods available. A starting production quantity of up to 5,000 metric tonnes will be required by Asbury for a variety of markets. Both firms expect to ramp up significantly from that starting amount. The Urbix facility is being constructed with the help of globally recognized mining EPCM firm M3 Engineering & Technology Corporation, who have also validated the expected refining costs at this new commercial facility in Mesa, Arizona.
“We are excited to propel our innovative refining techniques with a tenured organization like Asbury Carbons,” says Urbix Chairman Nico Cuevas. “Asbury clearly understands the evolving global graphite landscape and recognize our techniques as the next evolution in natural graphite refinement and ultimately the energy storage material market.”
About Urbix Resources
Urbix Resources LLC is one of the premier providers of refined graphite powders, pristine graphene, and specialty graphite products in the world. Urbix is also an expert in li-ion battery cell design and boasts next generation high voltage electrolyte and fast charging electrode nanoarchitecture. The company creates radical change in the way natural graphite is refined and commercialized, and specializes in all aspects of the graphite value chain. It is a premier provider of refined graphite powders, pristine graphene, and specialty graphite products. Urbix’s advanced technology includes environmentally and cost conscious purification methods and significant intellectual property developments in a wide range of applications. The Urbix laboratory is located in Mesa, Arizona with commercial milling operations outside Hermosillo, Sonora, Mexico.
About Asbury Carbons
For 124 years, Asbury Carbons a fourth generation privately owned global company has supplied quality carbon and graphite products including graphite dispersions for use in a wide range of industrial applications around the globe, including refractories, friction materials, lubricants, powder metals, carbon brush, rubber, heat management, fire retardant, fuel cells, drilling, coatings and many other applications. Asbury Carbons remains the most diversified supplier of all types of natural graphite, synthetic graphite, graphite dispersions, other related carbon products, and a variety of other raw materials. Asbury focusing on meeting customers particular needs and continue to maintain their position as the world’s supplier of choice for refined graphite and other carbons. Asbury’s extensive research and development group helps create new products to meet the ever-changing needs of their global customers along with continuing their long history of collaboration, growth, and diversification.
Urbix, who also feature a suite of advanced graphite technologies including graphene-enhanced high-voltage supercapacitors and graphene-enhanced concrete, will leverage their global supply chain of flake graphite along with Asbury’s to create a new and highly efficient graphite supply chain.
Urbix expects its new facility to be complete and operational by the end of 2019 at which time it will start providing toll processing services for many producers of graphite around the world. ◊