TORONTO (Canada)—Great Lakes Graphite Inc. recently announced that it has initiated a joint product development effort with NanoSpire, Inc. of Portland, Maine, to target advanced materials markets with a variety of high value carbon products. Great Lakes Graphite reported that NanoSpire has developed the next generation of particle sizing technology based on its patented technology, which “harnesses cavitation microjets to resize virtually any material into particles as small as a few nanometers.”

“We believe there are a number of competitive advantages that accrue to us through this partnership,” said Great Lakes Graphite CEO Paul Gorman, in a company release. “NanoSpire’s unique technology holds the potential to deliver greater process accuracies and efficiencies, as well as innovating entirely new products. We believe there will be tremendous value in the ability to consistently produce high quality carbon materials in volume, within a tight size range at the nanometer scale.”

NanoSpire, Inc. is an IP holding company founded in January 2002 to commercialize a new generation of cavitation re-entrant, jet-based tools and processes. The company, which won the prestigious Innovation Technology Award at the Nanotech 2003 + Future Conference in Tokyo, focuses its business and technology on the harnessing of high speed liquid cavitation re-entrant microjets. Mark LeClair and Serge Lebid, the principals at NanoSpire, have presented at numerous nanotechnology conferences.

“We believe that our technology has the potential to deliver significant process efficiencies and expand the product development boundaries with new and greatly expanded sizing capability,” said NanoSpire Founder and CEO Mark LeClair in a statement commenting on the collaborative effort. “We look forward to working closely with Great Lakes Graphite in a strong partnership that will engender substantial mutual benefits.”

Great Lakes Graphite (www.greatlakesgraphite.com) also announced that it has manufactured a quantity of several high-purity flake graphite products while working in conjunction with partners Shamokin Carbons and Ashland Advanced Materials. The development is one of the many necessary steps required to qualify as a supplier of high quality, high purity graphite products for use in battery anodes and other components for the electric car battery and stationary energy storage markets, the company said in a press release.

A total of more than 250 pounds of material were reported to have been processed in commercial scale micronization and purification facilities owned and operated by partners of Great Lakes Graphite that currently process commercial quantities of synthetic graphite. The manufactured flake graphite products include high purity micronized graphite, ultra-high-purity micronized graphite products, and ultra-high-purity spheronized graphite.

Results from analytical tests performed on the processed materials are said to indicate that the method and techniques being used are able to consistently achieve purity levels exceeding 99.9% carbon (high purity) and 99.99% carbon (ultra-high purity). The commercial purification furnaces at the Ashland Advanced Materials facility in Niagara Falls, New York, are operated at extremely high temperatures, up to 3,000 degrees centigrade, in order to achieve the high purification levels. Extremely high and consistent purity levels are required for material that is destined for the battery industry in order to maximize product performance.

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