- A world class metal technology company
- Technical team consists of global authorities in magnesium production and research
- Pilot plant construction has begun
What Western Magnesium does:
Currently, China controls 86% of the market for the metal and the firm has its roots around a decade ago when a team came together with the aim of bringing production of the metal back to the USA, where no new plant has been built in the last 50 years. The US controls 6% of the magnesium market but the production process is outdated, has a big environmental impact and high costs.
However, the firm's research and development (R&D) efforts have come up with a proprietary technology, which can generate magnesium metal with low labor, high automation, low energy and, significantly, with zero toxic byproducts and waste.
This continuous silicothermic process means the firm can be price competitive; can scale up easily and be environmentally friendly, it says.
Magnesium has a range of uses and is a composite metal, such that it is made to use aluminum and titanium. It is essential in a range of industries, including automotive, aviation, energy and military.
It is 80% lighter than steel and 60% lighter than titanium and yet is as strong as steel.
How is it doing:
On September 10 this year, Western Magnesium revealed plans to raise up to C$7 million via a private placing at C$0.13 a unit to further its plans.
That same month, the group revealed it had started building its first commercialized pilot plant in Canada aiming to become a low-cost producer of magnesium metal by the first quarter of 2021.
The move came after the firm secured a location for the plant in the lower mainland of British Columbia, close to the downtown core, major transportation routes and the airport. The aim is to build additional plants in the USA further down the line.
Technical staff, led by senior vice president Paul Sauve, have started work on the design of the plant and initial facility construction is beginning ahead of equipment delivery.
Mechanical engineering drawings and models are in the final stages of review, while a number of suppliers and service providers have also been granted access to the site, the company said.
The commercial plant is a smaller-scale version of the full production system.
- Completion of pilot plant project
- First production
- Magnesium price moves
What the boss says:
In September this year, Western Magnesium's chief executive Sam Ataya spoke to Proactive's Steve Darling and explained the significance of the firm's current position.
"With an industrial technology company such as ourselves, most investors are waiting two, three, four, five years for them to see anything happen," he said.
"Here we are at the precipice so this is the right time for investors to come in because we're going to be producing metal by Q1 and then from there we will know exactly. We will have purchase orders and LOIs with big, different industry and that will allow us to build the big, commercialized plants so this is the right time to invest now in our company."
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