Graphite is a naturally occurring mineral that is made up of carbon atoms arranged in a hexagonal lattice structure. It is a soft and slippery substance that has a metallic luster and is often used as a lubricant and as the “lead” in pencils.
There are two main types of graphite: natural and synthetic. Natural graphite is mined from the earth, while synthetic graphite is produced through a heating process that converts carbon materials like petroleum coke or coal tar pitch into graphite.
One form of natural graphite is flake graphite, which is characterized by its flake-like or platy shape. Flake graphite is formed when graphite veins are weathered and broken down by natural erosion. These flakes can range in size from a few microns to several centimeters across.
Flake graphite is often used in the production of steel and other metals, as well as in the manufacturing of batteries and fuel cells. It is also used as a lubricant in various industrial applications, such as in the aerospace and automotive industries.
The market for flake graphite is expected to grow in the coming years, driven by the increasing demand for electric vehicles and energy storage systems. These applications require large amounts of high-quality graphite in order to produce the necessary components.
Overall, graphite and flake graphite are versatile and essential materials with a wide range of industrial uses. As technology continues to advance, their importance is only set to increase.
Tirupati Graphite PLC (LON:TGR) is a fully integrated specialist graphite and graphene producer, with operations in Madagascar and India. The Company is delivering on this strategy by being fully integrated from mine to graphene. Its global multi-location operations include primary mining and processing in Madagascar, hi-tech graphite processing in India to produce specialty graphite, and a state-of-art graphene and technology R&D center to be established in India.