TORONTO, Jan. 17, 2024 /CNW/ – Black Swan Graphene Inc. ("Black Swan") (or the "Company") (TSXV: SWAN) (OTCQB: BSWGF) (Frankfurt: R96) is pleased to announce a range of Graphene Enhanced Masterbatch ("GEM") products. These GEMs offer different performance and attributes of products aimed at multiple applications in the polymer industry. This announcement follows a recent commercial agreement ratified with Hubron International Ltd. ("Hubron"), a global leader in black masterbatch manufacturing. See press release dated January 16, 2024.
It is paramount to underscore that Black Swan’s products are the results of extensive internal development efforts, including independent verification using the expertise at the Graphene Engineering Innovation Centre ("GEIC") and a strategic partnership with Hubron. The primary objective of the product development endeavors extends beyond performance; it strives for consistency, a pivotal factor in the commercialisation of additive products. In this context, the outcomes detailed herein stand as a testament to their reliability, and the independent validation from Hubron reinforces their validity. Black Swan GEM products also offer a price-performance improvement without disruption to the supply chain.
As visualised in the chart below, initial production volumes are focused on polypropylene; a widely used polymer known for its versatility and cost-effectiveness. However, its relatively low impact resistance has often posed a challenge in various applications. By incorporating only 1% of graphene into the polypropylene (loading ratio), an impressive 30% improvement in impact resistance was achieved in a Notched Izod test, which assesses the amount of energy absorbed by a material when struck by a notched sample.
Graphene enhanced products, with the addition of Black Swan’s product, demonstrate multiple performance benefits, including enhanced processability and therefore cost-effectiveness. Masterbatches with a loading ratio of up to 20% are available in various polymers. This repeatable performance in enhancing the impact resistance of polypropylene enables new possibilities across multiple industries, notably for different packaging and lightweighting in the transportation industry, a key driver for range increase and fuel efficiency.
Hubron and Black Swan are also working with the polymer matrix of a world-leading industrial polymer manufacturer, which launched an aggressive initiative to develop plastic materials for electric vehicles aimed at reduced weight, expand design freedom, reduce complexity, enhance thermal management, and reduce environmental impact. The development program resulted thus far in a 20% improvement in tensile strength, based on a loading ratio of only 0.2%.
Robert Laurent, Technical Director at Hubron, commented: "These results further add weight to the potential benefits of incorporating graphene materials into thermoplastics. A 30% impact resistance improvement is exciting, and we are looking to expand these trials into commercial applications. We are also able to fine-tune compound properties to deliver customer specific solutions."
Simon Marcotte, President and Chief Executive Officer of Black Swan, commented: "This development marks a substantial leap in advancing the performance of polymer materials. The enhanced capabilities of graphene-enhanced polypropylene not only signify a breakthrough but also have the potential to reshape entire industries. We are confident that this innovation will spark creativity and drive transformative solutions across a diverse range of products and applications."
In the coming months, Black Swan is also looking to introduce similar products for Polyamide 6 ("PA6"), a polymer known for its toughness, flexibility and chemical resistance, Polyamide 66 ("PA66"), a similar polymer with greater stiffness, strength, heat resistance, and melting point than PA6, Polyethylene Terephthalate ("PET"), a thermoplastic polymer known for transparency, strength, chemical resistance and recyclability, ideally suited for food packaging and beverage bottles, as well as for Polylactic Acid ("PLA") a biodegradable thermoplastic aimed at sustainable and compostable products.
The chart below provides results using Black Swan’s product, based on different loading ratios, for "Stress at Yield", which determines the amount of stress a material can withstand before undergoing permanent deformation, "Notched Izod", which determines the impact resistance qualities as discussed above, and "Bending Strength at Yield", which measures the ability to withstand bending or flexural loads.
Hubron International is one of the world’s leading suppliers of black masterbatch with over 85% of masterbatch production exported through a world-wide network of distribution partners. Established in 1934, Hubron has been improving polymers through compounding with carbon black for over 85 years. Hubron started manufacturing of carbon black thermoplastic masterbatches in 1972. Since then, the company has been serving the demands of industries such as film, sheet, pipe, cable and fibre extrusion, moulding, and technical compounding across the world. The company focus is one of providing black masterbatch as its core business, with a clear emphasis on the technical input and guidance into correct product selection. In 2010, Hubron acquired Whitaker Technical Plastics a leader in electrically conductive polymers.
For more information, please visit: www.hubron.com
Black Swan is focused on the large-scale production and commercialization of patented high-performance and low-cost graphene products aimed at several industrial sectors, including concrete, polymers, Li-ion batteries, and others, which are expected to require large volumes of graphene. Black Swan aims to leverage the low cost and green hydroelectricity of the province of Québec as well as the proximity of the province’s emerging graphite industry in order to establish an integrated supply chain, reduce overall costs, and accelerate the deployment of graphene usage. On March 27, 2023, Black Swan, Nationwide Engineering Research and Development Ltd. and Arup Group Ltd. ("Arup") announced strategic partnerships, establishing a fully integrated supply chain, and providing a turnkey solution for the construction and concrete industries. Arup is a multinational engineering consultancy headquartered in London, United Kingdom, with 18,000 experts working across 140 countries. Black Swan’s graphene processing technology was developed by Thomas Swan & Co. Ltd. ("Thomas Swan") over the last decade. Thomas Swan is a United Kingdom-based global chemicals manufacturer, with a century-long track record and has been at the forefront of graphene innovation.
For more information, please visit: www.blackswangraphene.com
Black Swan Graphene Inc. on behalf of the Board of Directors
Simon Marcotte, CFA, President & Chief Executive Officer
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The information contained herein contains "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of applicable securities legislation. Forward-looking statements relate to information that is based on assumptions of management, forecasts of future results, and estimates of amounts not yet determinable. Any statements that express predictions, expectations, beliefs, plans, projections, objectives, assumptions or future events or performance are not statements of historical fact and may be "forward-looking statements." Forward-looking statements are subject to a variety of risks and uncertainties which could cause actual events or results to differ from those reflected in the forward-looking statements, including, without limitation: risks related to the TSXV listing, risk related to the failure to obtain adequate financing on a timely basis and on acceptable terms; risks related to the outcome of legal proceedings; political and regulatory risks associated with the industry; risks related to the maintenance of stock exchange listings; risks related to environmental regulation and liability; the potential for delays in development activities or the completion of feasibility studies; the uncertainty of profitability; risks related to the inherent uncertainty of production and cost estimates and the potential for unexpected costs and expenses; results of feasibility studies, and the possibility that future results will not be consistent with the Company’s expectations; risks related to commodity prices fluctuations; and other risks and uncertainties related to the Company’s prospects, properties and business detailed elsewhere in the Company’s disclosure record. Should one or more of these risks and uncertainties materialize, or should underlying assumptions prove incorrect, actual results may vary materially from those described in forward-looking statements. Furthermore, performance results of graphene products as additives can vary widely depending on type and the specificity of the target material, the specifics of the graphene product itself, including but not limited to, carbon purity, particle size, surface agent, dispersion behavior, and application and usage methods. Investors are cautioned against attributing undue certainty to forward-looking statements and initial test results. These forward-looking statements and test results are made as of the date hereof and the Company does not assume any obligation to update or revise them to reflect new events or circumstances, except in accordance with applicable securities laws. Actual events or results could differ materially from the Company’s expectations or projections.
SOURCE Black Swan Graphene Inc