- Lake Resources has been aggressively engaged in the development of its Kachi Lithium Brine project for a considerable period of time.
- LKE is well-positioned to be evaluated for production finance, and an on-site pilot plant is anticipated to produce larger battery quality lithium samples.
- The near-term focus of LKE is the production of additional samples by Hazen and later transporting the same to Novonix Limited (ASX:NVX) for testing.
- In the long-term, the Company targets to be in negotiation for construction finance by October 2021 and aims to commence production in 2023.
Lithium brine projects-focused mineral exploration company, Lake Resources NL (ASX:LKE) is engaged in the development of sustainable, high purity lithium from its Kachi Project (flagship), as well as three other lithium brine projects in Argentina, through direct extraction technology.
Significantly, all the projects of LKE are located within the Lithium Triangle, which accounts for nearly 40% of the global lithium production at the lowest cost. While LKE has a major expandable resource at the Kachi project, the Company has been working alongside Lilac Solutions for over two years to efficiently develop the project.
Lake Resources is a pioneer in the lithium sector alongside Lilac, demonstrating its breakthrough clean technology solution for delivering high purity lithium in future.
LKE Produces First Samples Of Lithium Chloride
It was not very long ago when LKE successfully produced the first samples of lithium chloride from the direct extraction pilot plant module of its technology partner, Lilac Solutions. The attainment of this milestone fuelled LKE’s aspirations to supporting the scale-up from previously successful lab-scale work.
LKE has tested an innovative direct extraction technique on the basis of a well-used ion exchange water treatment method for more than 18 months in partnership with Lilac Solutions. The testing with a pilot plant module operating on Kachi brines has shown 80-90% recoveries and LKE has produced battery quality lithium carbonate (99.9% purity) with very low impurities from Kachi brine samples.
The test results were then incorporated into a Pre-Feasibility Study. The advantage of producing a consistently high-quality product at scale as compared to the grade of the project is demonstrated through Lilac Solutions’ direct lithium extraction and the PFS.
Presently, LKE’s Kachi Project is suitably positioned for evaluation to allow for production finance, and an on-site pilot plant is anticipated to produce larger battery quality lithium samples as discussions with downstream parties and financiers are advancing well to develop the project.
Potential at Olaroz and Cauchari Brine Projects
Other projects of LKE comprise of the Olaroz Project and Cauchari Project, both 100% owned. Notably, the Olaroz Project is located in Jujuy Province of Argentina, and both Olaroz and Cauchari are in close proximity to Lithium America’s Cauchari Project, that holds the world’s largest defined lithium brine resource and has an annual production target of 40,000 tonnes.
Both these projects indicate a major potential for LKE to unveil significant value for its shareholders in coming times as the Company transforms into a clean lithium producer.
Results from the Company’s aggressive drilling efforts at these projects have presented high-grade lithium brines, indicating an expansion from the adjacent lithium projects under development.
Although progress in 2020 was hampered due to the COVID-19 pandemic; however, LKE endured through the situation with minimal impact due to significant controls a solid team effort.
Near-term Planned Activities
Further, independent laboratory, Hazen Research, produced the first samples of high purity battery quality lithium carbonate on 20 October 2020 for testing in a 622 battery by Novonix.
Over the coming weeks, additional samples shall be produced by Hazen for use by downstream supply chain stakeholders and off-takers. Subsequently, these samples shall be transported to Novonix Limited (ASX:NVX) for testing along with commercial battery cathode precursor materials in NMC622 batteries.
Importantly, the lithium sector continues to witness positive headwinds in relation to its demand and issues have been stressed with a pending shortfall of supply of clean battery quality lithium.
Long-term Planned Activities
Moving ahead, LKE seems suitably positioned to generate high purity battery quality lithium carbonate for use by off-takers as well as Novonix to test in batteries. Furthermore, several activities, including the advancement of detailed studies (like the DFS), environmental studies, testing of production well pump, a DLE pilot plant on site have been planned for the upcoming time.
For October 2021, the Company targets to be in negotiation for construction finance with an aim to begin production in 2023 while meeting the increasing need for high quality, scalable and sustainable battery materials.
On 06 November 2020, LKE share price quoted at $0.061, up by 10.909% (at AEST 12:30 PM) with a market capitalisation of $43.56 million.