VUL achieves greater than 90% lithium chloride recovery rate

3 minute read

By Jonathan Jackson. Published at May 27, 2021, in Small Caps

Vulcan Energy (ASX:VUL) is making excellent progress at its lithium extraction pilot plant.

Vulcan’s pilot plant team has successfully achieved target specification for Direct Lithium Extraction (DLE) feed into its pilot plant and has also achieved target recovery of greater than 90% for lithium chloride from Upper Rhine Valley brine.

Put simply, this means VUL has achieved 90% recovery rate on its recently operating direct DLE pilot plant.

There are several benefits in this including it:

  • being a key step toward large scale production
  • providing key data and proof for the definitive feasibility study
  • ability to produce lithium samples for potential offtake partners.

Vulcan is aiming to become the world’s first lithium producer with net zero greenhouse gas emissions.

Its ZERO CARBON LITHIUMTM Project will produce a battery-quality lithium hydroxide chemical product from its combined geothermal energy and lithium resource, which is Europe’s largest lithium resource, in Germany.

Vulcan’s unique, ZERO CARBON LITHIUMTM Project will produce both renewable geothermal energy, and lithium hydroxide, from the same deep brine source.

Speaking on its progress, VUL Managing Director Francis Wedin said, “The latest update from our laboratory and pilot plant lithium extraction teams in Germany shows good progress has been achieved in a very short space of time. We will aim to continue this momentum and to continue to rapidly de-risk and scale-up our lithium extraction process in the months to come, as we execute on our strategy to deliver our Zero Carbon LithiumTM Project into production for the European battery electric vehicle market.”

Vulcan aims to supply the lithium-ion battery and electric vehicle market in Europe, which is the fastest growing in the world.

The Vulcan Zero Carbon LithiumTM project has a resource which can satisfy Europe’s needs for the electric vehicle transition, from a source with net zero greenhouse gas emissions, for many years to come.

Last week the International Energy Agency released a new report, Net Zero by 2050: a Roadmap for the Global Energy Sector.

“With the International Energy Agency last week declaring the need for annual battery production of 6,600 GWh by 2030, implying an annual lithium chemicals requirement of 22 times current total global production, Vulcan is leading the charge to reduce large carbon emissions currently embodied in the traditional production of lithium,” Wedin said.

“The team at Vulcan is highly motivated to ensure that the global transition to renewables, energy storage and electric mobility is conducted in a sustainable, net zero manner, and we are channelling this motivation into systematically executing on our Zero Carbon LithiumTM Project.”

Given this news, VUL will now turn its attention to:

  • Ramp up of DLE pilot plant to 24/7 operation
  • Production of lithium chloride solution to be converted to lithium hydroxide
  • Production of samples for potential customers/offtakers
  • Further work on post-treatment of brine.

Read more: VUL Achieves Target 90% Lithium Extraction while Billionaires Buying on Market

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