Mr. Bernard Tourillon of HPQ reports
HPQ NANO SILICON REACTOR UPDATE
HPQ Silicon Resources Inc., through its wholly owned subsidiary HPQ Nano Silicon Powders Inc., is updating shareholders on advancements of the Purevap
nano silicon reactor (NSiR) development project led by technology provider
PyroGenesis Canada Inc.
Advancing methodically, focus on battery-grade nano silicon materials
As expected with groundbreaking research and development projects, the PyroGenesis engineering team continued to resolve design and process issues encountered during phase 1 of the Purevap
NSiR development program. As testing progressed during the second half of 2021, the challenge for the team became eliminating oxygen from the final product of nano silicon material. The oxygen was affecting the ability to produce qualified samples.
Systematic analysis of the process performed by the PyroGenesis technical team indicated that:
- The internal sources of oxygen contamination were directly linked to the heat-resistant liner material used in the Gen 1 Purevap
NSiR, a modified Gen 2 Purevap
quartz reduction reactor (QRR), originally designed for the carboreduction of quartz into silicon;
The Gen 1 Purevap NSIR needed to be redesigned and rebuilt to eliminate the internal sources of the contamination.
The modified Gen 1.5
NSiR system was redesigned and built in Q3 2021 and commissioned in Q4 2021. Preliminary results obtained with material produced during commissioning tests completed in December are very promising. Once final adjustments are completed, expected in January, the system will be ready to produce new samples for third party evaluation.
"For HPQ NANO, 2021 was the year of 'slow is smooth and smooth is fast.' While it may have taken us longer than we had expected to get here, we are here now, ready to revolutionize nano silicon materials manufacturing for batteries, a market that is ready to explode," said Bernard Tourillon, president and chief executive officer of HPQ Silicon. "While HPQ value proposition is derived from harnessing the potential of our silicon materials innovations,
the silicon and nano silicon materials needed to offer
ESG-compliant silicon materials to meet the demand of the up-and-coming renewable energy revolution, we could not be here without PyroGenesis and its technical team depth and experience."
tests validate ability to make high-value nano silicon materials
During the first half of 2021, the Gen 1 NSiR was used to validate the following key design parameters of the NSiR process, a new low-cost method to manufacture nano silicon materials:
The NSiR can produce less than 150 nanometres of nano silicon materials (powders and nanowires);
- SEM imaging of the latest material produced showed that material can be produced in the 10 to 50 nm range, which has direct application for solid state batteries developers.
The NSiR can produce nano silicon materials powder at the throughput needed to allow for low-cost production of nano materials (HPQ April 22, 2021, release).
"Notwithstanding some unexpected delays, we couldn't be prouder of where we are in developing this game changing technology with strategic partners like HPQ," said P. Peter Pascali, chief executive officer and chair of PyroGenesis. "The fact that we are getting closer to meeting a significant challenge in the development of lithium-ion batteries for the electric vehicle market not only proves that we are on the right track and with the right partner, but also validates our commitment as an emerging leader in providing CO2
HPQ vertical silicon integration: a powerful advantage
Another key takeaway from the efforts by the PyroGenesis team is that it confirms the advantage of HPQ's ability to produce internally sourced feedstock material produced by its proprietary Purevap
QRR process. By controlling the entire chain from raw material, the company can modify the entire process and adapt the feed material required for the NiSR production to meet end-market requirements.
About PyroGenesis Canada Inc.
PyroGenesis Canada, a high-tech company, is a leader in the design, development, manufacture and commercialization of advanced plasma processes and sustainable solutions which reduce greenhouse gases (GHG) 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 three 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, and its 3,800-square-metre and 2,940-square-metre research and development and manufacturing facilities, PyroGenesis maintains its competitive advantage by remaining at the forefront of technology development and commercialization. The operations are ISO (International Organization for Standardization) 9001:2015 and AS9100D certified, having been ISO certified since 1997.
About HPQ-Silicon Resources Inc.
HPQ-Silicon Resources is a Quebec-based innovative silicon solutions company that offers innovative silica- (SiO2) and silicon-based solutions, and is developing a unique portfolio of high value-added Si products sought after by battery and electric vehicle manufacturers.
Silicon, also known as silicon metal, is one of today's key strategic materials needed for the decarbonization of the economy and the renewable energy revolution (RER). However, silicon does not exist in its pure state and must be extracted from quartz (SiO2) in what has historically been a capital and energy-intensive process.
PyroGenesis Canada Inc., HPQ-Silicon is developing:
quartz reduction reactors (QRR), an innovative process (patent pending) which will permit the one-step transformation of quartz into high-purity Si at reduced costs, energy input and carbon footprint that will propagate its considerable renewable energy potential;
- Through its 100-per-cent-owned subsidiary HPQ Nano Silicon Powders Inc., the
nanosilicon reactor is a new proprietary process that can use material produced by the QRR as feedstock, to make a wide range of nano/microspherical powders of different sizes and nanowires;
Through its second 100-per-cent-owned subsidiary HPQ Silica Polvere Inc., HPQ-Silicon is developing a new plasma-based process that will allow a direct quartz-to-fumed silica transformation, removing the usage of hazardous chemical in the making of fumed silica and eliminating the hydrogen chloride gas associated with its manufacturing.
HPQ is also a technology development company interested in developing hydrogen-based ventures that could be complementary to the QRR efforts. Currently, HPQ is evaluating two different approaches to reach this goal, those being:
Working with Swiss-based company EBH2 Systems SAS as it pertains to its proprietary process to manufacture green hydrogen via electrolysis;
- Developing the company's own processes of making hydrogen via hydrolysis of nanosilicon materials made by Purevap
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