MONTREAL, QC., March 2019 /PVBUZZ MEDIA/ — Montreal-based HPQ Silicon Resources (HPQ) (TSX-V “HPQ”) is pleased to announce the receipt of a progress report from PyroGenesis Canada Inc (“PyroGenesis”) (TSX Venture: PYR) describing the latest significant milestones reached during GEN2 testing of the PUREVAPTM Quartz Reduction Reactor (“QRR”).
The PUREVAP™ QRR process converts Quartz into Silicon Metal to 99.99% Si, (referred to as 4N) in a single step. At this purity, the metal can then be refined metallurgically to 5N (SoG-Si). The whole process uses far less energy and materials – and costs less – than the traditional process.
The PUREVAP™ QRR process was developed in partnership with Pyrogenesis Canada Inc. (PYR), which specializes in high-temperature plasma technologies. The company had presented a proof-of-concept (GEN 1) process that led to the improved design of a GEN 2 reactor.
In late 2018, GEN2 commercial scalability proof-of-concept tests where confirmed, which means the PUREVAP™ QRR can successfully operate under a semi-continuous mode. Scaling up from GEN1 to GEN2 in semi-continuous mode, increased production yields from ~ 1% to 34%, which is crucial to the final purity of Silicon Metal (Si) produced by PUREVAP™.
“The one-step impurities removal capacity of the PUREVAP™ QRR and its direct impact on the final purity of the PUREVAP™ Si is the key milestone that will allow HPQ, working with PyroGenesis and Apollon Solar, to develop a low cost and green metallurgical process to produce Solar Grade Silicon Metal (SoG-Si),” said Bernard Tourillon, President and CEO of HPQ Silicon Resources Inc. “The fact that GEN2 testing replicated and improved GEN1 results is a major milestone that bodes well for the future as we get ready to start, mid-2019, the GEN3 commercial scalability testing phase, aimed at demonstrating the PUREVAP™ QRR commercial potential”.
Using data from both GEN1 and GEN2 tests, PyroGenesis concluded that, even using low purity feedstock (98.84% SiO2), the carbothermic part of the PUREVAP™ QRR process should allow HPQ to reach the 4N+ Si (99.99+% Si) purity threshold.
“Having a process capable of producing 4N+ Silicon Metal in one step is, according to Apollon Solar, one of the most unique and potentially the greatest advantage of the PUREVAP™ QRR process as we strive to develop a low cost and green metallurgical process to produce Solar Grade Silicon Metal (SoG-Si),” adds Tourillon.
A GEN3 pilot is being assembled in a dedicated area at PyroGenesis’ facility in Montréal. The assembly will be completed during Q1 2019, commissioned during Q2 2019 and operational mid – 2019, just 3 years after the original concept was validated.
About HPQ Silicon
HPQ Silicon Resources Inc. is a TSX-V listed resource company focuses on becoming a vertically integrated and diversified High Purity, Solar Grade Silicon Metal (SoG-Si) producer and a manufacturer of multi and monocrystalline solar cells of the P and N types, required for the production of high-performance photovoltaic conversion.
HPQ’s goal is to develop, in collaboration with industry leaders, PyroGenesis (PYR.V) and Apollon Solar, that are experts in their fields of interest, the innovative PUREVAPTM “Quartz Reduction Reactors (QRR)”, a truly 2.0 Carbothermic process (patent pending), which will permit the transformation and purification of quartz (SiO2) into high purity silicon metal (Si) in one step and reduce by a factor of at least two-thirds (2/3) the costs associated with the transformation of quartz (SiO2) into SoG Si. The pilot plant equipment that will validate the commercial potential of the process is on schedule to start mid-2019.
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