Expandable graphite is one of the fastest growing markets along with Li ion batteries. It is the only graphite market to have experienced price increases over the last couple years and is largely based on XL flake material which is the strength of the Bissett Creek deposit. It involves treating XL flake graphite with a dilute acid solution and heating it to cause the flakes to split apart, expand and increase hundreds of time in volume. This material is pressed into sheets to create a foil which can be cut into shapes and used in many applications including thermal management in consumer electronics, high end gaskets that are heat and corrosion resistant, fire retardants, smart building products, flow batteries and fuel cells. Fuel cells are already a billion dollar industry with commercial buses, forklift trucks, standby power plants, etc. already in operation. There are commercial fuel cell cars now and many observers expect them to become more popular more quickly than EVs.
Because of the growth in demand, and declining production from Shandong Province, China, there are now shortages of large/XL flake concentrates. Prices and margins are high and new sources of supply are required.Expandable Graphite | Asbury Carbons
Expanded Graphite | SGL CARBON
Graphite Insulfoam Introduced - May 2015