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PyroGenesis Canada Inc
Symbol PYR
Shares Issued 170,416,955
Close 2021-10-20 C$ 4.84
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PyroGenesis forms PyroGenesis Aluminum business segment

2021-10-20 15:53 ET - News Release

Mr. Peter Pascali reports

PYROGENESIS ANNOUNCES FORMATION OF "PYROGENESIS ALUMINUM" DIVISION DEDICATED TO SERVING THE ALUMINUM INDUSTRY

Further to its press release dated Sept. 27, 2021, PyroGenesis Canada Inc. has created a new division, PyroGenesis Aluminum (PyroGenesis-Al), dedicated exclusively to PyroGenesis's environmental offerings to the aluminum industry.

PyroGenesis's aluminum portfolio will include five main offerings: (i) Drosrite sales and tolling services; (ii) valorization of downstream dross residues; (iii) upstream applications; (iv) PyroGenesis's high-powered plasma torches geared to replacing fossil fuel burners; and (v) the repurposing of spent pot lining (SPL) residue recovery. The combination of these offerings is designed to position PyroGenesis Aluminum as a unique one-stop shop for zero-landfill/reduced-carbon service solutions, which cater to the aluminum industry.

"Following our successful joint venture agreement with a leading residue processor to transform aluminum dross residues into high-value chemical products, and the recent success of our yet-to-be-announced upstream applications, we decided to form a division specifically dedicated to the aluminum industry," said P. Peter Pascali, chief executive officer and chairman of PyroGenesis. "PyroGenesis-Al is positioned to offer a complete portfolio of products and services that drive GHG [greenhouse gas] emissions reduction, as well as repurpose toxic landfill waste streams into valuable products, for the aluminum industry. As such, we believe that PyroGenesis-Al is well positioned to address many of the key environmental challenges facing the industry."

"Due to their strong, durable and lightweight characteristics, aluminum products are frequently marketed as a green material," said David D'Aoust, sales manager, Drosrite. "These qualities have led aluminum to become a key material in the decarbonization of the transportation industry for example, through enabling electrification (electric vehicles). Furthermore, aluminum is infinitely recyclable, making it an excellent candidate for replacing plastics in consumer packaged goods. However, two key drawbacks are that: (i) current production processes result in significant amounts of GHG emissions; as well as (ii) the need to landfill hazardous wastes. We believe that these drawbacks can be addressed by our unique offerings, and, as such, PyroGenesis can make significant contributions and truly make aluminum the real green material of the future."

PyroGenesis-Al offerings

Drosrite

PyroGenesis's Drosrite offers the aluminum industry an economically and environmentally sound solution to processing dross (a waste stream containing valuable metal) and eliminating landfill, while at the same time contributing to reducing GHG emissions:

  • Direct -- due to savings in transportation and avoiding burning fossil fuels in a rotary salt furnace;
  • Indirect -- due to the increased recovery of aluminum (less emissions than producing aluminum from primary resources).

The attached table, based on internal calculations, summarizes the potential emission reduction assuming all the dross produced in the world was treated with Drosrite.

Based on this analysis, greater than four million tonnes of GHG can be reduced each year (which is the equivalent of removing close to 875,000 cars from the road each year) if the world's aluminum dross was treated with Drosrite. According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency, an average passenger car in the United States emits 4.6 tons of carbon dioxide per year. This equates to removing an average of 1,458 cars per year for each of PyroGenesis's five-tonne systems, or close to 3,000 cars per year for each of the company's 10-tonne systems.

Valorization of downstream dross residues

Aluminum dross typically comprises two elements: (i) aluminum metal (60 per cent); and (ii) aluminum oxide (40 per cent). PyroGenesis's Drosrite system can recover up to 98 per cent of the aluminum metal fraction. It is this remaining 40 per cent aluminum oxide (dross residues) material that is often landfilled or sold as a cheap additive. Following the joint venture's announcement, it is expected that these residues could now be processed by the JV and converted into high-margin products, such as aluminum sulphate and ammonium sulphate, thereby transforming a waste stream into a valuable product and unlocking a potentially significant new revenue stream for the company.

PyroGenesis's proprietary plasma torches

Many of the largest primary aluminum smelters already own, and generate, their own electricity to reduce costs, since electricity costs are among one of the most significant operating expenses in production. For example, Quebec's rapidly growing aluminum industry is enhanced by affordable and renewable hydroelectricity generation. Among the largest GHG emission sources are the fossil fuel burners used across the smelters' operations to heat kilns and furnaces. Given the immense and affordable electrical infrastructure already existing at aluminum smelters, PyroGenesis's plasma torches represent an opportunity for simple electric-powered bolt-in replacements to fossil fuel burners. PyroGenesis's torches are designed to significantly reduce GHG emissions.

Repurposing spent pot lining

As previously announced, the company is currently developing a new technology to address a significant problem facing the aluminum industry: what to do with residues generated from spent pot liners. PyroGenesis is currently developing a new SPL technology, in partnership with a major Quebec aluminum smelter, Aluminerie Alouette, based on its core plasma waste destruction technologies that are currently in use with the U.S. Navy. This process is designed to transform SPL residues into a fuel that is lower in carbon, as well as into materials that are inert and reusable. In turn, this process provides an alternative to landfill disposal of SPL residues and potentially other industrial byproducts, while significantly reducing specific GHG emissions. This process is a closed-loop solution at the smelter's site, eliminating the current industry reliance upon the cement industry for disposal of hazardous waste fractions.

"These offerings are quite timely given the environmental pressure facing the industry, and we expect to continue to build upon recent successes," said Mr. Pascali. "On the back of introducing our Drosrite offering, our technology won one of the largest dross-processing tenders put out to bid. This was a significant achievement and was the impetus for the announcement today. In addition to this, we expect to sign our first tolling agreement in Europe by year-end. This would cap our sales/tolling strategy for Drosrite.

"Once inside the fence, we rapidly identified both downstream and upstream opportunities. With respect to downstream opportunities, we recently signed a JV agreement which will enable us to process residues typically destined for landfill/cheap aggregate into high-value chemical products. We have already identified the first opportunity, and we should have more news on this in the coming months. As exciting as our downstream opportunities, we provided an update on our upstream opportunity in the outlook section of our financial statements dated Aug. 16, where we noted that the $40-million opportunity was delayed. We also identified a second opportunity, where, again, we seem to be the preferred contender. Despite the delay, which is beyond our control, we are excited by the fact that, in both instances, we are the lead contenders and, as such, has confirmed that we have identified a very compelling offering. Last but not least, the work we are doing to develop environmental solutions (such as repurposing spent pot lining residues) to discerning players in the industry demonstrates the success we are having in becoming a go-to environmental solutions company to a very conservative industry."

About PyroGenesis Canada Inc.

PyroGenesis Canada is a leader in the design, development, manufacture and commercialization of advanced plasma processes and sustainable solutions that reduce greenhouse gases and are economically attractive alternatives to conventional dirty processes. PyroGenesis has created proprietary, patented and advanced plasma technologies that are being vetted and adopted by multiple multibillion-dollar industry leaders in four massive markets: iron ore pelletization, aluminum, waste management and additive manufacturing. With a team of experienced engineers, scientists and technicians working out of its Montreal office, as well as its 3,800-square-metre and 2,940-square-metre manufacturing facilities, PyroGenesis maintains its competitive advantage by remaining at the forefront of technology development and commercialization. The operations are ISO 9001:2015 and AS9100D certified, having been ISO certified since 1997.

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