The inferred estimate of 25 million tonnes at 0.45% lithium is a milestone for the lithium explorer and processing technology developer.
Significantly, not only is it the first time the company has secured a lithium resource, there is also potential to add to it.
Lithium Australia’s SiLeach® processing technology is suited to unlocking the lithium value of historical silicate deposits such as Sadisdorf.
The deposit doesn’t stack up as a standalone tin mine, but adding lithium and the by-product credits made possible by SiLeach, makes it more feasible economically.
This is supported by the project’s proximity to Volkswagen (ETR:VOW), BMW (ETR:BMW) and Mercedes (ETR:DAI) who are rapidly gearing up to make electric vehicles (EVs).
The company's patented processing technology unlocks the deposit's potential
Adrian Griffin, managing director, said: "Our previous testing demonstrates that SiLeach can unlock the potential of Sadisdorf as a true polymetallic operation, recovering lithium from the residues of conventional tin concentration processes.
"The size of the Sadisdorf resource is already significant, with the potential to feed a 25,000 tonnes per annum lithium carbonate plant for 10 years.
"Further exploration is likely to expand the resource significantly."
Farm-in with Tin International
Lithium Australia is farming into a joint venture at Sadisdorf in southeast Germany with German firm Tin International AG.
The maiden resource was based on reanalysis and reinterpretation of historical drilling and underground sampling.
Tin International previously defined a 3.36 million tonne inferred resource at Sadisdorf grading 0.44% tin.
SiLeach will upgrade the mine to a polymetallic deposit
The SiLeach technology will upgrade the historical tin-tungsten mine to a polymetallic deposit.
It will provide economic contributions from lithium, tin and tungsten with other possible by-products including potassium sulphate fertiliser and sodium silicate.
In the European vehicle manufacturer's backyard
Griffin also said: “It is noteworthy that Sadisdorf has similar grades to those of the nearby Cinovec deposit (Czech Republic) and is not far from the Zinnwald deposit of Deutsche Lithium GmbH.
"All of these deposits have similar characteristics, making them difficult, if not impossible, to commercialise using conventional lithium processing technology – SiLeach provides the solution.
"We are in the backyard of the most rapidly expanding consumption of lithium outside China, with most European vehicle manufacturers announcing their plans to go electric.
"The synergies are obvious, and at Lithium Australia we are well placed to take advantage of that expanding market.”
Lithium important in manufacture of lithium-ion batteries
Lithium is an important commodity, especially in the manufacture of lithium-ion batteries.
Demand for lithium is forecast to increase significantly in line with the growing market for EVs powered by these batteries.
Lithium Australia has strategic alliances with a number of companies, potentially providing it with access to a diversified lithium mineral inventory.
The company aspires to create a union between resources and the best available technology, and in so doing establish a global lithium processing business.