Markets: HPA Demand Is Increasing
90% of HPA is produced in Asia with majority from China, typically 4N HPA.
HPA is used to manufacture industrial sapphire substrates which are used in LED lights and LED displays such as those in handheld devices, phones, TVs…
Many countries are banning incandescent bulbs within the next few years including China and USA.
Consumers are demanding brighter LED lights and LED displays requiring 5N to 6N HPA.
Supply of higher purities are constrained and quality control is already a major issue. Impurities cause high manufacturing reject rates and burnouts which increase manufacturing costs.
Orbite can capture the HPA market by producing a stable Western supply of 4N to 6N HPA.
A multi-billion-dollar market
The size of the global high-purity alumina market is difficult to estimate, but it has been pegged at about 7,500 tonnes annually, with high growth rates.
Orbite will focus on the higher-margin, higher-purity (99.99%+) segment of this market.
Orbite Produces First Tonne of High Purity Alumina at Plant in Cap-Chat, Quebec
Tuesday, January 22, 2013
MONTREAL, QUEBEC--(Marketwire - Jan. 22, 2013) -
Orbite Aluminae Inc. (TSX:ORT)(OTCQX:EORBF) ("Orbite" or the "Company") is pleased to announce that it successfully produced its first tonne of high-purity alumina (HPA) during the last week of December 2012 and early January 2013 as part of the initial commissioning and testing activities at its commercial-scale HPA production plant in Cap-Chat, Quebec. HPA samples were independently tested by EAG confirming that an initial purity of greater than 4N (4N+) was achieved during this initial production period. Further commissioning activities -- and optimization of the purity towards 5N and greater -- are expected to take up to two months to complete and are proceeding according to schedule.
"This is a great moment for Orbite. The initial production demonstrates the Company's ability to design, build, and operate a commercial alumina facility on-time and on-spec using its unique patented technology," said Richard Boudreault, President and CEO of Orbite Aluminae. "Given that the ground breaking for the HPA plant was barely more than six months ago, our ability to make so much progress in this very short timeframe only highlights the simplicity and robustness of our innovative process."
"We are also very pleased to have commissioned the acid regeneration circuit, achieving acid recovery rates during HPA calcination of over 99.99 percent, as independently measured by CMI-UVK, which is superior to the 99.75% that was expected and is equivalent to 25x less acid loss than anticipated," said Denis Primeau, Eng., Chief Engineer of Orbite Aluminae. "All of which further demonstrates the viability of using our proprietary process to produce smelter-grade alumina (SGA) at our proposed SGA plant."
The process used by Orbite to produce HPA is unique and patented. It differs significantly from the rest of the HPA industry and is expected to produce higher purities at lower production costs than existing producers.
Orbite anticipates that it will start commercial production at the beginning of the second quarter of 2013, with plans to offer HPA powder and HPA granules ranging from 4N to an eventual 6N (99.9999%) purity. Orbite also anticipates the production of gallium and scandium once a recovery circuit is completed in mid-2013.