PERTH (miningweekly.com) – ASX-listed Lake Resources has struck a deal with US-based lithium extraction technology company Lilac Solutions to partner on technology and funding to develop the Kachi lithium brine project, in Argentina.
Under the terms of the partnership earn-in, Lilac could earn a 25% equity stake in the Kachi project with certain corresponding project funding obligations, while providing its technology to advance the project.
Lilac’s first 10% interest in the project will be the result of funding the cost of completing testing of its technology at the Kachi project, within an agreed timeline. A further 10% interest will be earned on satisfying all agreed testing criteria using a demonstration plant.
A further 5% in the project could be earned on the refined lithium chemical product from Kachi achieving the highest agreed qualification standards with certain potential offtake partners.
“We have progressed methodically through testing and pilot stage work and are now pleased to have the partnership established,” Lake Resources MD Steve Promnitz said.
“Lilac's technology is truly disruptive as it has taken a non-mining tech solution which cuts operating costs and boosts lithium recovery from our brines. The process is modular, producing high purity lithium, and can be ramped up quickly through pilot to commercial stages, and this equity stake ensures a rapid commercialization of the Lilac technology at the Kachi site.”
Promnitz said end-users of high purity battery materials were demanding more environment-friendly production methods and Lilac’s innovative and efficient direct extraction method sets the new industry standard.
Lilac CEO Dave Snydacker said the Kachi project is a globally significant lithium resource.
“With the Lilac technology we can efficiently deliver the large volumes of high-quality lithium chemicals needed by battery makers.
“Importantly, this will be done in a way that is environmentally-friendly. We’ve worked extensively with this brine, generating the data needed for engineering studies, and it is a fantastic fit for the Lilac technology.
“We’re thrilled to be partnering with Lake, and the Lilac team is excited to demonstrate our technology on site at Kachi and advance the project.”
A definitive feasibility study on the Kachi project is due in the second quarter of next year.
A previously completed updated prefeasibility study estimated that the project could produce 25 500 t/y of lithium carbonate over a mine life of 25 years, with capital costs estimated at $540-million.