OREANDA-NEWS. Zenyatta Ventures Ltd. ("Zenyatta" or "Company") (TSX VENTURE: ZEN)(OTCQX: ZENYF) today announced it has commenced a two-part metallurgical program designed to provide data for the start of a pre-feasibility phase on its Albany graphite project located in northern Ontario, Canada. The program will be carried out at SGS Canada Inc. ("SGS") in Lakefield, Ontario under the supervision of Zenyatta's project manager James Jordan, P.Eng. 

Part 1 -- Production of Larger Market Samples

The first part of the metallurgical test work is designed to produce larger market samples of high-purity graphite which will permit continued graphite and graphene application validation by potential end-user partners, academic institutions and third party testing facilities under the general market and business development program. The market sample is being prepared from concentrate produced during flotation pilot plant testing completed in 2014. It is anticipated that approximately 50 kilograms of high-purity graphite material will be produced using the caustic bake / leach method, previously employed to produce high-purity market samples. Approximately 10 tonnes of drill core was processed and was representative of the mineralized zones defined in the July 9, 2015 Preliminary Economic Assessment ("PEA"). Test work on small market samples completed to date has successfully confirmed the Albany graphite to have a very good crystal structure (hexagonal) with a very desirable purity and particle size for various applications such as lithium ion batteries, fuel cells, powder metallurgy and graphene production.

Aubrey Eveleigh, President and CEO stated, "Production of high-purity graphite market samples is essential in order to create and develop relationships with end-users during the product qualification and testing process. This phase of the metallurgical program is currently in progress and is anticipated to be completed in the fall of 2016." 

Part 2 -- Optimization and Pilot Scale Test Work

The second part of the metallurgical test work will focus on optimization of flow sheet parameters followed by a pilot scale simulation of a commercial process designed for the pre-feasibility study. This program will be a continuation of metallurgical testing completed for the PEA. Zenyatta has shipped approximately 6 tonnes of composite coarse reject material (from drill core) to SGS for this pilot plant testing. The composite material was taken from 19 drill holes from the East Pipe and 23 drill holes from the West Pipe of the Albany graphite deposit. This optimization and pilot program will be on-going for the next several months and completed in early 2017. 

Eveleigh further stated, "Optimization of a process flow sheet is a common exercise in mineral development and especially so for a specialty industrial mineral product from a unique graphite deposit like Albany. We are continuing to develop a distinctive commercial process for Zenyatta's hydrothermal style graphite deposit. Once ready, the complete process flow sheet and associated engineering data will then be fed into the pre-feasibility study." 

About Zenyatta

Zenyatta Ventures Ltd is developing the Albany Graphite Deposit situated in northeastern Ontario, Canada. The deposit is a unique type of igneous-hosted, fluid derived graphite mineralization contained in two large breccia pipes. The Company has completed a July 9, 2015 Preliminary Economic Assessment which indicates an open pit mine life of 22 years (excludes underground and open at depth) producing 30,000 tonnes purified graphite per annum. The Company is seeking end users for their graphite and graphene and is working with several collaborative partners including the development of a graphene infused concrete. Other potential markets for graphite include Li-ion batteries, fuel cells and powder metallurgy. The application for graphitic material is constantly evolving due to its unique chemical, electrical and thermal properties. It maintains its stability and strength under temperatures in excess of 3,000°C and is very resistant to chemical corrosion. It is also one of the lightest of all reinforcing elements and has high natural lubricating abilities. The outlook for the global graphite market is very promising with demand growing rapidly from new applications. It is now considered one of the more strategic elements by many leading industrial nations, particularly for its growing importance in high technology manufacturing and in the emerging "green" industries such as electric vehicle components. 

The Albany graphite deposit is situated 30 km north of the Trans-Canada Highway, power line and natural gas pipeline near the communities of Constance Lake First Nation and Hearst. A rail line is located 70 km away with an all-weather road approximately 10 km from the graphite deposit. The world trend is to develop products for technological applications that need extraordinary performance using ultra-high purity graphite powder at an affordable cost. Albany graphite can be upgraded with very good crystallinity without the use of aggressive acids (hydrofluoric) or high temperature thermal treatment therefore having an environmental advantage over other types of upgraded high-purity graphite material.