25 March 2021
Tirupati Graphite plc ('Tirupati' or the 'Company')
Team Strengthened to Support Rapid Growth
Tirupati Graphite plc, the fully integrated, revenue generating, specialist graphite producer and graphene developer with operations in Madagascar and India, is pleased to announce that it has strengthened its team across its three business units to support its rapid growth including the appointment of a world-leading graphene scientist and mineral processing technology expert, Dr S. K. Biswal.
· Appointed Dr S. K. Biswal, an eminent scientist and technocrat specialising in the fields of graphene and mineral processing technology, as head of the Tirupati Graphene and Mintech Research Centre ('TGMRC').
· Engaged Dr S. K Sathpathy, an ex-executive director of National Aluminium Company Ltd., as an advisor to the Company, specially focussed on application of graphene in aluminium manufacturing smelters and graphene aluminium composites development.
· Appointed Dr P. Dash, who is also focused on graphene engineering science and was awarded a PhD under the guidance of Dr S. K. Biswal.
· 30+ engineers, geologists, technologists, and specially trained technicians appointed in recent months across all three business units.
Shishir Poddar, CEO of Tirupati Graphite, said, "It has been a great joy for me to become acquainted with industry personalities over the years who share a common passion in graphite and graphene, green technologies, and waste to wealth creation. We share a common belief that as responsible global citizens we owe it to the environments in which we operate to contribute towards a greener globe, and garner this as an opportunity for value creation. I feel honoured to add such impactful scientists and technology intellects to the Tirupati team, and strongly believe that they are our biggest asset.
"Dr Biswal's reputation precedes him. As a technologist and scientist in Tirupati's areas of specialisation, with unparalleled business development, he is ideally placed to lead advances at the Graphene & Technology Centre. I wish him a very warm welcome to the team; his appointment completes Tirupati's senior management team over our three business units and our corporate structure. The additions to the technical team, including Dr S. K Sathpathy and Dr P. Dash, will help us hone our technologies as we hope to nurture both our talent and create future leaders across our business. I would like to extend a very warm welcome to both. We are in accelerated development mode and strengthening the management team is key to successfully driving our developments forward."
Dr S. K. Biswal (PhD), said, "I am delighted to join Tirupati in its efforts in building a global leading business in the graphite and graphene field, and firmly believe in its ethos of advanced technology forming the backbone of the business development for a greener world. I have known Mr. Poddar for close to three decades and share his vision and passion for building Tirupati and advancing the industry. I am looking forward to a new challenge following my position in a CISR research centre. As Tirupati's shareholders will know, graphite and graphene are materials of extreme importance for our future, and their impact upon sustainable development is profound, however, the process in fine tuning these technologies always require further work and resources. We will continue to develop various technologies and materials to this end and will concentrate our efforts into building the Company."
The Tirupati Graphene and Mintech Research Centre is focused on becoming a leading graphene manufacturer, developing its applications, and giving the Company its technological backbone. Significant advances have recently been made at this state-of-the-art centre, including the ground-breaking optimisation of its zero-chemical graphene products to consistently achieve a specific surface area of 1100 - 1200 m2/g from 400 - 500 m2/g, which may further enhance the use of the material in various applications.
To support TGMRC's growth strategy, the Company has appointed Dr S. K. Biswal, a world-leading graphene scientist and mineral processing technology expert to head up the centre. After 32 years of service, Dr Biswal recently retired as Chief Scientist at The Institute of Minerals and Materials Technology, a premier research institute of Government of India under the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research.
During Dr S. K. Biswal's career, he was awarded the CISR Technology Award 2017 for development of technological, commercially feasible processes for utilisation of low and lean grade iron ores and has received other awards including The Skoch Award, The National Geographic Science Award, The Mineral Beneficiation Award, The MECON Award, among others for his contribution to the development of technologies leading to utilisation of low and lean grade natural resources, waste reduction, and efficiency improvements.
Technologies developed under Dr Biswal have been commercialised in multiple industries including the Company's flake graphite projects, ArcelorMittal Nippon Steel, Tata Steel BSL Ltd, JSW Steel Ltd and other large projects processing millions of tonnes of resources annually. His technological expertise includes graphene manufacturing and characterisation, rheological studies, and design of pipeline systems for long distance transport of mineral ores, coal gasification technologies and more.
Amongst other notable successes, Dr Biswal has 12 national and international patents; executed 165 projects for mineral processing technology development for an array of resources including flake graphite; held two science journal editorial positions; mentored ten PhD awardees; published 80 papers in SCI journals; and published 150 papers in national and international scientific symposiums.
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For further information, please visit https://www.tirupatigraphite.co.uk/ or contact:
Tirupati Graphite Plc
+44 (0) 20 3984 9894
Optiva Securities Limited (Broker)
+44 (0) 20 3137 1902
St Brides Partners Ltd (Financial PR)
Isabel de Salis / Cosima Akerman
+44 (0) 20 236 1177
Tirupati Graphite Plc is a revenue-generative, multi-asset, multi-jurisdictional, fully integrated producer and developer of high-grade natural flake graphite, speciality graphite and graphene, which captures the entire value chain. With a unique set of properties, graphite has diverse applications with multiple growth streams and graphene forms the new generation of 2D materials. In support of this, the Company places a special emphasis on "green" applications, including renewable energy generation, energy storage and composites, and is committed to ensuring its operations are sustainable as well.
The Company's operations include primary mining and processing in Madagascar, where the Company operates two key projects, Sahamamy and Vatomina; 3,000 tpa of high-quality flake graphite concentrate with up to 96% purity is currently being produced and sold to customers globally, and this is planned to increase to 84,000 tpa by 2024 as per the Company's modular medium-term development plan.
In India, through Tirupati Speciality Graphite Private Limited ('TSG'), with whom the Company has a binding acquisition agreement subject to regulatory approvals, Tirupati processes and produces speciality graphite for use in hi-tech applications like lithium-ion batteries, fire retardants and composites. Its specialty graphite processing operations include the 1,200 tpa Patalganga Project, which was commissioned in July 2019 to manufacture and sell CARBOFLAMEX®, a trademarked fire-retardant expandable graphite product. At the next stage of development, Patalganga shall further be expanded to 4,800 tpa capacity with capabilities to also produce high purity and micronised graphite, so increasing market and product reach by 2021. TSG has developed unique green processing technologies for manufacturing these advanced materials.
After establishing itself in the specialty graphite markets through the Patalganga Project, an additional 24,000 tpa specialty graphite processing facility is to be established in two 12,000 tpa phases. The plant will produce expandable, high purity, micronised and spherical graphite. The west coast of India has been chosen as the location and a detailed feasibility study has been completed. TSG is also in the process of establishing the Tirupati Graphene and Mintech Research Centre, a state-of-the-art R&D centre focussed on manufacturing graphene, developing its applications, and further providing environmentally friendly technologies consultancy for mineral processing.