Graphite India Ltd has enhanced the electrode capacity of its Durgapur plant from 10,500 tonnes to 20,000 tonnes per annum in view of the current competitive capital cost and anticipated improvement in electrode demand in the medium term.


The additional 9,500-tonne capacity would be created at a capital expenditure of Rs 67.50 crore. The expansion, being undertaken by using eco-friendly advanced technology, would also help achieve greater energy efficiency, estimating the total cost of expansion at Rs 255 crore.


The company has also undertaken 50 Mw thermal power project at Durgapur at a cost of Rs 214 crore to be funded through internal accruals and debt. The capacity expansion is scheduled to be completed by third quarter of 2011-12 and power project by fourth quarter of 2011-12.


The current capacity utilisation is around 63 per cent up from the 2009-10 average of 52 per cent.

In the current year, capacity utilisation could go up to 80 per cent. Negotiations with needle coke, primary raw material for manufacturing graphite electrodes, have yielded cost savings of around 10 per cent. Durgapur power plant would bring about cost saving of rupee one per unit.


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