https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au Proactiveinvestors RSS feed en Fri, 19 Oct 2018 11:25:27 +1100 http://blogs.law.harvard.edu/tech/rss Genera CMS action@proactiveinvestors.com (Proactiveinvestors) action@proactiveinvestors.com (Proactiveinvestors) <![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia secures option over further lithium prospective acreage in WA ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/206139/lithium-australia-secures-option-over-further-lithium-prospective-acreage-in-wa-206139.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) is adding to its extensive lithium holdings in Western Australia after taking an option over the Youanmi Lithium Project, which hosts abundant pegmatites.

These lithium pegmatites intrude layered mafic rocks, which also host vanadium-rich magnetite horizons.

Three exploration licences in the prospective Youanmi region have been secured by completing a binding heads of agreement with private exploration company, Diversity Resources Pty Ltd.

Lithium Australia’s managing director Adrian Griffin said, “The Youanmi Lithium Project has many of the attributes of WA’s other emerging lithium centres.”

The project is within the Archean Yilgarn Block, about 450 kilometres northeast of Perth.

Lithium potential “largely ignored”

Griffin said the area had been a focus of past multi-metal exploration but the lithium potential had largely been ignored.

However, “there has been a significant amount of drilling of the vanadium horizons”.

The three exploration licences in the Youanmi region of WA’s Mid-West.

Youanmi is at an early exploration stage and initial work has included prospecting, review of past work, geological inspections, geological mapping, rock chip sampling and minor orientation geochemistry.

Other work carried out includes digital terrain modelling, acquisition and interpretation of publicly available aeromagnetic and radiometric images, GPS topographic surveying, CAD drafting and database creation.

READ: Lithium Australia cathode powder plant to produce samples for China battery makers

This work has revealed occurrences of lithium-bearing pegmatites over a strike length of almost 3-kilometres and a width of at least 200 metres.

Rock sampling has confirmed the presence of potentially economic lithium values of up to 4.2% Li2O and also anomalous tantalum values.

Spodumene may also occur

The lithium mineral in the pegmatites inspected so far is lepidolite while regional zoning patterns in pegmatites elsewhere suggest the possibility that spodumene could also occur in the area.

Most of the area around the known pegmatite locations is covered by sheetwash and it is likely that lithium pegmatites are far more extensive than the few outcrops currently known.

An unexplained magnetic low beneath the main area of pegmatite dykes suggests the possibility of a larger pegmatite mass beneath.

READ: Lithium Australia begins trade-off studies for large-scale lithium processing pilot plant

Griffin said that the lithium mineralisation style was ideally suited to the company’s SiLeach® processing and “may be a feed source for Lithium Australia’s Generation 3 pilot plant”.

Agreement terms

The agreement involves the company securing an option to purchase 100% of the project for consideration of:

- An option to acquire all of Diversity Resources Pty Ltd rights, interests and title in and to Exploration Licences 57/978 and 57/1049 and 57/1056 for $100,000 for an initial 6-month option, non-refundable; - $100,000 for an extension to the option period to 12 months, non-refundable; - $3.1 million scrip exercise; and - Surviving gross production royalty of 2%, or $1 per ton of material mined and processed, whichever is greater.

The parties will work towards completion of a formal agreement within 30 days.

Lithium Australia aspires to 'close the loop' on the energy-metal cycle.

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Tue, 02 Oct 2018 09:20:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/206139/lithium-australia-secures-option-over-further-lithium-prospective-acreage-in-wa-206139.html
<![CDATA[Media files - Lithium Australia to 'close the loop' on battery materials with complements to SiLeach® process ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/stocktube/10615/lithium-australia-to-close-the-loop-on-battery-materials-with-complements-to-sileach-process-10615.html Thu, 27 Sep 2018 09:00:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/stocktube/10615/lithium-australia-to-close-the-loop-on-battery-materials-with-complements-to-sileach-process-10615.html <![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia begins trade-off studies for large-scale lithium processing pilot plant ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/205485/lithium-australia-begins-trade-off-studies-for-large-scale-lithium-processing-pilot-plant-205485.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) has commenced trade-off studies to resize its proposed large-scale pilot plant (LSPP) with an objective of reducing capital costs.

Despite the additional engineering requirements of resizing the LSPP, LIT remains confident that the studies required for commitment to construction of the plant will be complete in the coming quarter as these plans are well advanced.

Plant location

LIT is also reassessing the pilot plant location to optimise technical and financial benefits.

The changing policies of the Australian federal government, with respect to support for research and development, have had a significant impact on the company’s plans.

Unfortunately, the Australian jurisdiction is becoming less favourable when compared with many other locations.

The location of the LSPP will take into account the principal financial considerations together with intangibles such as the ability to manage research & development in offshore jurisdictions.

Capital requirement

The planned reduction of capital exposure has placed LIT in a position within which the Arena Investors convertible note facility is presently not the optimal funding mechanism for its immediate requirements.

Consequently, the facility has been terminated in its current form.

The company is continuing to evaluate the most effective financing options to complement its strategic agenda.

READ: Lithium Australia SiLeach® pilot plant trials successfully produce lithium

LIT Managing Director Adrian Griffin said: “Changing our pilot plant strategy and reducing capital exposure is in the interests of all shareholders.

“The support of Arena has been very important to our strategy and it is unfortunate that changes in government policy have had such an impact on our research and development plans.

“We thank Arena for its support and look forward to engaging with it as a key investor in any future relationship.

“Lithium Australia will locate its R&D activities in a jurisdiction that will provide the greatest practical benefits to its shareholders.”

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Mon, 24 Sep 2018 11:36:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/205485/lithium-australia-begins-trade-off-studies-for-large-scale-lithium-processing-pilot-plant-205485.html
<![CDATA[Media files - Lithium Australia 'will have lithium cathode material ready for testing within 2 weeks' ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/stocktube/10458/lithium-australia-will-have-lithium-cathode-material-ready-for-testing-within-2-weeks--10458.html Thu, 13 Sep 2018 11:11:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/stocktube/10458/lithium-australia-will-have-lithium-cathode-material-ready-for-testing-within-2-weeks--10458.html <![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia cathode powder plant to produce samples for China battery makers ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/204779/lithium-australia-cathode-powder-plant-to-produce-samples-for-china-battery-makers-204779.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) has completed a number of production runs of its lithium iron phosphate (LFP) cathode powder pilot-plant based in Brisbane, Queensland.

Samples will now be produced for lithium-ion battery-cell makers in China over the coming fortnight.

With in-house testing having confirmed the high capacity LFP cathode material, Lithium Australia will seek confirmation of that performance from prospective customers.

The now commissioned facility was officially opened on 6 September by Ian Macfarlane, chief executive of the Queensland Resources Council.

READ: Lithium Australia recommissioning the country’s only cathode powder pilot plant

Lithium Australia’s Adrian Griffin said: “We are convinced that VSPC’s elegant solution to increasing lithium-ion battery efficiency is the best available for the production of LFP cathode powders.

“The technology also has applications in catalyst and medical fields. Independent tests have already shown that VSPC cathode powders out-perform industry benchmarks – a compelling reason for cell makers to use VSPC material.”

READ: Lithium Australia SiLeach® pilot plant trials successfully produce lithium

Elsewhere, the company recently commenced stage II SiLeach® processing trials at a facility in Sydney, New South Wales.

The objective is to use the processing technology to convert mine waste into lithium-ion batteries, which would be a world first.

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Thu, 13 Sep 2018 09:46:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/204779/lithium-australia-cathode-powder-plant-to-produce-samples-for-china-battery-makers-204779.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia SiLeach® pilot plant trials successfully produce lithium ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/204681/lithium-australia-sileach-pilot-plant-trials-successfully-produce-lithium-204681.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) has recently commenced stage II SiLeach® processing trials after stage I work successfully generated lithium solutions from mine waste.

Stage II work has used the SiLeach process to separate and remove calcium and fluorine impurities from the stage I lithium solutions.

Lithium Australia’s managing director Adrian Griffin said: “The success of the new pilot plant facility at ANSTO augurs well for our scale-up aspirations.

“It's encouraging to note the relative ease with which we've achieved targets to date, particularly in view of the feed material used – in this case, contaminated mine waste from the Kalgoorlie region.

SiLeach could have multiple applications

“SiLeach is ideal for recovering lithium from such materials.

“We're also enthusiastic about other applications for some of these process steps; in particular, the recovery of lithium from brine, which currently involves lengthy solar evaporation and is subject to the vagaries of the weather.”

READ: Lithium Australia receives German approval for Sadisdorf licence transfer

Lithium Australia’s recently acquired 100% owned Sadisdorf Lithium Tin Project in Germany is an example of a company asset where the SiLeach process has substantial value-add potential.

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Wed, 12 Sep 2018 08:37:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/204681/lithium-australia-sileach-pilot-plant-trials-successfully-produce-lithium-204681.html
<![CDATA[Media files - Stage II testing of Lithium Australia's SiLeach® process successfully underway ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/stocktube/10434/stage-ii-testing-of-lithium-australia-s-sileach-process-successfully-underway-10434.html Tue, 11 Sep 2018 16:30:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/stocktube/10434/stage-ii-testing-of-lithium-australia-s-sileach-process-successfully-underway-10434.html <![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia receives German approval for Sadisdorf licence transfer ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/204576/lithium-australia-receives-german-approval-for-sadisdorf-licence-transfer-204576.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) has received necessary approval from German state authorities for the transfer of licences for the Sadisdorf Lithium Tin Project in Saxony, Germany.

In June 2018, Lithium Australia entered into an agreement to acquire 100% of Sadisdorf.

The conditions precedent for the acquisition have been completed and Lithium Australia is now the sole owner of the Sadisdorf lithium resource and the Hegelshöhe exploration licence.

Lithium Australia will now pay the purchase consideration of €2 million of which €500,000 will be cash, and €1.5 million payable in shares valued at 105% of VWAP.

READ: Lithium Australia’s drilling confirms historical lithium results in Germany

During August 2018, Lithium Australia intersected significant lithium mineralisation from drilling at Sadisdorf confirming historical drill results.

Results included 78.51 metres at 0.51% lithium oxide and 68.56 metres at 0.51% lithium oxide and 78.09 metres at 0.48% lithium oxide.

The project presently contains an inferred resource of 25 million tonnes at 0.45% lithium oxide.

Several intervals from this drilling suggest there is potential for a future resource upgrade.

READ: Lithium Australia produces impressive results in pilot plant trial of lithium extraction technology

Most recently, Lithium Australia produced impressive results during the first stage of a pilot plant trial of its proprietary SiLeach® process aimed at extracting lithium from mine waste.

The first stage of the trial at ANSTO’s minerals piloting facility in NSW produced a lithium pregnant liquor from lepidolite feed.

The company’s proprietary SiLeach® process will now progress to a stage II trial.

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Tue, 11 Sep 2018 10:46:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/204576/lithium-australia-receives-german-approval-for-sadisdorf-licence-transfer-204576.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia produces impressive results in pilot plant trial of lithium extraction technology ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/204390/lithium-australia-produces-impressive-results-in-pilot-plant-trial-of-lithium-extraction-technology-204390.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) has produced impressive results during the first stage of a pilot plant trial of its proprietary SiLeach® process aimed at extracting lithium from mine waste.

The first stage of the trial at ANSTO’s minerals piloting facility in NSW produced a lithium pregnant liquor from lepidolite feed.

Stage II, which begins next week, will process the liquor to produce lithium chemicals.

READ: Lithium Australia moves one step closer to producing lithium batteries from mine waste

Managing director Adrian Griffin said, “We are extremely pleased with the outcome of the first stage of the two-stage SiLeach® pilot plant trial at ANSTO Minerals.”

Shares are up more than 8% to 10.5 cents.

 

The concentrate used as feed for the trial was prepared in Perth, under the supervision of Independent Metallurgical Operations Pty Ltd and consisted of lepidolite recovered from mine waste.

During stage I, the plant operated in continuous mode for five days in August, processing lepidolite concentrate at around 4 kilograms per hour through leach, pre-neutralisation and impurity removal stages.

Results exceed target

Preliminary data indicate that lithium extraction in the leach circuit peaked at 97.5% and averaged 94% for the duration of the trial.

Leach results exceeded target supporting the opportunity for concentrate grind size and reagent optimisation during design of the proposed large-scale pilot plant (LSPP).

Run in an integrated manner, the trial demonstrated continuous operation of Lithium Australia’s proprietary SiLeach® process, including full recycle of intermediate process streams.

All unit processes operated robustly, with minimal stoppages and practical solid/liquid separation was achieved for all circuits tested.

Samples provided to vendors

Samples were provided to multiple vendors in order to complete solid/liquid separation test work.

This will also confirm equipment selection and sizing and support a cost estimation for the SiLeach® LSPP front end engineering and design (FEED) study being conducted by CPC Project Design Pty Ltd.

Operation of the multi-stage impurity removal circuit confirmed the rejection of aluminium fluoride (AlF3) in the first stage and encouraged further investigation into the feasibility of recovering an AlF3 by-product from this residue.

AlF3, an important additive in the production of aluminium by electrolysis, has recently gained immense traction in the global market, due to its beneficial properties and broad range of applications.

Indeed, the AlF market is projected to expand at a CAGR of 4.6% in the period from 2018 to 2028.

READ: Lithium Australia recommissioning the country’s only cathode powder pilot plant

The lithium-rich liquor produced during stage I met purity targets and will be processed through to lithium chemicals in stage II.

At that stage, calcium and fluorine will be removed and a lithium phosphate produced as a final product.

Subsequently, a sub-sample of that product will be further processed at VSPC Ltd, a wholly-owned LIT subsidiary, to create cathode material for use in the production of lithium-ion batteries.

VSPC will make samples of that material available for testing by potential offtake partners.

Aim to produce lithium-ion battery

Griffin said: “We anticipate that stage II will result in the production of a lithium chemical from waste material sourced near Kalgoorlie.

“We will then apply VSPC’s proprietary process to that lithium chemical and, ultimately, produce a lithium-ion battery: a world first.”

Lithium Australia will also investigate converting SiLeach®-produced lithium phosphate to a lithium hydroxide product.

The company is also assessing the implications of the Federal Government’s policy change in capping its Research and Development rebate scheme, a move with the potential to negatively affect the new energy metals processing industry proposed for Western Australia.

LIT is considering relocating its successful R&D activities elsewhere – perhaps Germany, which has a target date for the demise of internal combustion engines and is facilitating that through attractive R&D financial support.

READ: Lithium Australia to turn waste into commercial lithium product

Griffin said the company’s work would continue “whether the Australian Federal Government chooses to back the Lithium Valley concept or just ignore it”.

He added: “The official recommissioning of VSPC’s Brisbane cathode powder pilot plant occurred yesterday, with an opening ceremony to celebrate the occasion.”

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Fri, 07 Sep 2018 10:18:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/204390/lithium-australia-produces-impressive-results-in-pilot-plant-trial-of-lithium-extraction-technology-204390.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia recommissioning the country’s only cathode powder pilot plant ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/204186/lithium-australia-recommissioning-the-countrys-only-cathode-powder-pilot-plant-204186.html Lithium Australia NL’s (ASX:LIT) wholly owned subsidiary VSPC Ltd is recommissioning its Brisbane facility that produces cathode material for use in the production of lithium-ion batteries.

The Wacol, Brisbane facility will be formally commissioned tomorrow by Ian McFarlane.

READ: Lithium Australia moves one step closer to producing lithium batteries from mine waste

It is worth noting that the facility is Australia’s only cathode powder pilot plant and battery-testing facility.

LIT managing director Adrian Griffin said: “We are extremely pleased with the acquisition of VSPC and proud to host guests for the official recommissioning of VSPC's Brisbane cathode powder pilot plant.

“We advise our shareholders and other interested parties that the ceremony will be available to view live from 2PM EST on the company’s website: www.lithium-au.com .”

READ: Lithium Australia’s drilling confirms historical lithium results in Germany

LIT recently received significant lithium mineralisation from drilling at the Sadisdorf Project in Germany, confirming historical drill results.

Consistent lithium mineralisation, as mica, was encountered, including 78.51 metres at 0.51% lithium oxide and 68.56 metres at 0.51% lithium oxide

The company is advancing the Sadisdorf scoping study on the basis that its 100% owned SiLeach® process can unlock the full potential of this style of mineralisation.

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Wed, 05 Sep 2018 11:14:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/204186/lithium-australia-recommissioning-the-countrys-only-cathode-powder-pilot-plant-204186.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia moves one step closer to producing lithium batteries from mine waste ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/203745/lithium-australia-moves-one-step-closer-to-producing-lithium-batteries-from-mine-waste-203745.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) has received approval from the Department Mines and Petroleum for the removal of excess tonnage from Lepidolite Hill Lithium Project in Western Australia.

The material recovered under the terms of the excess tonnage removal permits will be part of the feed required for LIT’s large-scale SiLeach® pilot plant.

However, the program to recover lepidolite (lithium mica) remains subject to appropriate approvals.

READ: Lithium Australia able to separate lithium using ore-sorting technology

Chemical analysis of product and waste streams supports the successful partitioning of lepidolite (lithium mica) into a concentrate stream.

LIT managing director Adrian Griffin said: “Obtaining approval for excess tonnage advances our aim of producing lithium-ion batteries from mine waste.

“That will begin with the application of our 100% owned SiLeach® process to produce the lithium component.”

READ: Lithium Australia to turn waste into commercial lithium product

Griffin added “We are well advanced with a pilot plant run at ANSTO Minerals (a division of the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation) to generate the materials that will be used to further process that lithium in our Brisbane based VSPC facility.

“The production of batteries from mine waste will be a world first.

“VSPC will officially complete the commissioning of its Brisbane cathode powder pilot plant on 6 September 2018.

“This momentous occasion will be celebrated with an opening ceremony on that day.”

 

The Very Small Particle Company (VSPC) can produce lithium-ion phosphate at a finer size than other producers, which gives batteries far superior performance.

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Wed, 29 Aug 2018 12:41:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/203745/lithium-australia-moves-one-step-closer-to-producing-lithium-batteries-from-mine-waste-203745.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia’s drilling confirms historical lithium results in Germany ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/203606/lithium-australias-drilling-confirms-historical-lithium-results-in-germany-203606.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) has received significant lithium mineralisation from drilling at the Sadisdorf Project in Germany, confirming historical drill results.

Drill hole section with results

Consistent lithium mineralisation, as mica, was encountered, including:
• 78.51 metres at 0.51% lithium oxide and 68.56 metres at 0.51% lithium oxide; and
• 78.09 metres at 0.48% lithium oxide.

Significant intercepts of tin and tungsten mineralisation include:
• 19.4 metres at 0.65% tin;
• 2.09 metres at 0.72% tin; and
• 1 metre at 1.65% tungsten.

READ: Lithium Australia to turn waste into commercial lithium product

The company’s managing director Adrian Griffin said: "Lithium Australia’s maiden drilling program at Sadisdorf confirms the polymetallic style of mineralisation and the conservative nature of current resource statements.

“We are advancing the Sadisdorf scoping study on the basis that our 100% owned SiLeach® process can unlock the full potential of this style of mineralisation.

“The project location can take full advantage of the rapidly developing EV industry in Europe and has the potential to develop a new industry for Germany.”

 

Sadisdorf is a mothballed tin mine within a “greisen” (altered granite) alteration consisting of lithium micas. The project presently contains an inferred resource of 25 million tonnes at 0.45% lithium oxide.

Historical drilling has a maximum grade of 0.646% lithium oxide, as an upper detection limit of the grade estimation technique used at the time.

Several intervals in the new drilling are higher than this grade. This suggests there is potential for a future resource upgrade.

READ: Lithium Australia subsidiary producing lithium-ion cathode material for battery market

Notably, the Sadisdorf Project is in Saxony, Germany - close to the rapidly expanding European electric vehicle and battery industries.

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Mon, 27 Aug 2018 11:31:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/203606/lithium-australias-drilling-confirms-historical-lithium-results-in-germany-203606.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia to turn waste into commercial lithium product ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/201495/lithium-australia-to-turn-waste-into-commercial-lithium-product-201495.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) specialises in the process development of waste materials such as lithium micas, which it has access to in both Western Australia and Germany.

The company has identified multiple lithium mica feed sources for a new large-scale pilot plant (LSPP).

To date, substantial bench-scale and pilot plant trial test work has been undertaken on the 80%-owned Lepidolite Hill deposit in Western Australia.

However, far less test work has been undertaken at a second deposit designated Waste2.

Waste2 deposit to be used as feed

Tests have shown that the metallurgical characteristics of concentrates produced from Waste2 vary from those of other micas tested.

This is due to the material have higher ratios of muscovite and lepidolite.

READ: Lithium Australia subsidiary producing lithium-ion cathode material for battery market

Lithium Australia’s managing director Adrian Griffin said: “Lithium Australia continues its war on waste.

“In processing the Waste2 material, we will clearly demonstrate that we can take the particular waste provided, run it through the SiLeach® pilot plant and create a commercial lithium chemical.”

The pilot plant run is due to commence in early August and the aim is to produce lithium products to commercial specifications.

A vertically integrated strategy, from waste to battery material

Griffin added: “But that's only step II in ascending the value chain. Subsequently, the lithium chemical will be sent from Lucas Heights to our VSPC Brisbane plant for processing into battery cathode material.

“The cathode powder will then be tested at VSPC's in-house battery testing facility. We hope to report on its performance with respect to battery applications in coming months.”

The LSPP front-end engineering and design (FEED) study nearing completion, anticipated in the September quarter 2018.

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Wed, 25 Jul 2018 11:33:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/201495/lithium-australia-to-turn-waste-into-commercial-lithium-product-201495.html
<![CDATA[Media files - Lithium Australia NL commences production of lithium-ion cathodes from VSPC ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/stocktube/9926/lithium-australia-nl-commences-production-of-lithium-ion-cathodes-from-vspc-9926.html Mon, 23 Jul 2018 15:01:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/stocktube/9926/lithium-australia-nl-commences-production-of-lithium-ion-cathodes-from-vspc-9926.html <![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia subsidiary producing lithium-ion cathode material for battery market ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/200992/lithium-australia-subsidiary-producing-lithium-ion-cathode-material-for-battery-market-200992.html Lithium Australia NL’s (ASX:LIT) subsidiary VSPC Ltd has started producing lithium-iron-phosphate (LFP) battery cathode material from its newly recommissioned pilot plant.

Delivery of cathode material samples from the pilot facilities in Brisbane is expected to begin in the December quarter of 2018.

Lithium Australia managing director Adrian Griffin said: “VSPC gives Lithium Australia the opportunity to manufacture the world’s most advanced cathode materials – at the high-margin end of the battery metals market.

“Importantly, VSPC will also allow us to capitalise on waste batteries as a feed source.”

 

VSPC is a specialist battery-component research and development laboratory wholly-owned by Perth-based Lithium Australia.

After completing the recommissioning, VSPC is verifying the quality and consistency of its pilot-production materials.

This is being done via VSPC’s advanced, on-site electrochemical testing facilities, the capabilities of which include the ability to assemble and test lithium-ion coin and pouch cells.

READ: Lithium Australia producing lithium-ion battery cathode materials

International battery makers previously showed strong interest in VSPC’s 4th-generation LFP cathode material.

This interest was supported by tests in late 2017 that showed the performance of VSPC's cathode material exceeded that of an industry standard material.

READ: Lithium Australia enhances SiLeach® process by lodging two new patent applications

Griffin said: “We anticipate immense pressure on the supply of energy metals such as lithium and cobalt in the near future.

“Battery recycling not only supports sustainability but may also, ultimately, prove the cheapest source of those energy metals materials in years to come.

“The ability to produce cathode powders from these materials, while also controlling particle size, is clearly advantageous.

“It is an integral part of our sustainable and ethical supply policy."

Lithium Australia intends to ‘close the loop’ on the energy-metals cycle.

Change of name

In conjunction with the recommissioning, the name of the wholly-owned subsidiary has been changed to VSPC Ltd from Very Small Particle Company Ltd.

Lithium Australia aspires to ‘close the loop’ on the energy-metals cycle utilising strategic assets and disruptive technologies to establish a vertically integrated lithium processing business.

It aims to improve the lithium-ion battery supply chain with technologies that include its SiLeach® lithium extraction process, superior cathode material production from VSPC, and enhanced recycling techniques for battery materials.

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Wed, 18 Jul 2018 09:18:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/200992/lithium-australia-subsidiary-producing-lithium-ion-cathode-material-for-battery-market-200992.html
<![CDATA[Media files - Lithium Australia's proprietary SiLeach® process is a 'silver bullet' for lithium extraction ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/stocktube/9601/lithium-australia-s-proprietary-sileach-process-is-a-silver-bullet-for-lithium-extraction-9601.html Mon, 18 Jun 2018 14:04:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/stocktube/9601/lithium-australia-s-proprietary-sileach-process-is-a-silver-bullet-for-lithium-extraction-9601.html <![CDATA[Media files - Lithium Australia's purchase of Sadisdorf further aligns it to European EV industry ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/stocktube/9560/lithium-australia-s-purchase-of-sadisdorf-further-aligns-it-to-european-ev-industry-9560.html Wed, 13 Jun 2018 19:11:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/stocktube/9560/lithium-australia-s-purchase-of-sadisdorf-further-aligns-it-to-european-ev-industry-9560.html <![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia enhances SiLeach® process by lodging two new patent applications ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/198745/lithium-australia-enhances-sileach-process-by-lodging-two-new-patent-applications-198745.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) has lodged two new patent applications related to its lithium processing proprietary technology SiLeach®.

The first is a process to produce lithium phosphate, and the second is the process for recovering lithium phosphate and/or lithium sulphate from lithium-bearing silicates.

An unprecedented advantage

The innovative patents cover unprecedented advantages for the company in that lithium can be recovered from the process liquors without the requirement for extensive evaporation.

This process may be applicable to other process streams such as conventional spodumene conversion.

Evaporating is an expensive process

Lithium Australia’s managing director Adrian Griffin said: "Managing the water balance correctly has, until now, been an expensive and vexing issue for many lithium chemical producers.

“Lithium Australia will expedite commercialisation of the SiLeach® process, capitalising on the advantages gained by solving this processing challenge.

“Being able to produce lithium chemicals without the necessity of evaporating large quantities of water clearly puts us ahead of our peers."

READ: Lithium Australia to acquire Sadisdorf from Tin International AG

Lithium Australia's SiLeach® process can extract lithium from all silicate minerals, but is ideally suited to processing lithium micas, considered a waste product in many mining operations.

The company is currently undertaking a scoping study on its recently acquired Sadisdorf deposit where it is hoped SiLeach® will breathe new life into the mothballed tin mine, enabling the recovery of lithium, tin and other by-products.

READ: Lithium Australia producing lithium ion battery cathode materials

The resulting lithium chemicals can be used as a feed source for Lithium Australia's VSPC cathode powder production technology, providing a cost-effective means of delivering lithium units to battery producers.

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Wed, 13 Jun 2018 13:07:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/198745/lithium-australia-enhances-sileach-process-by-lodging-two-new-patent-applications-198745.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia to acquire Sadisdorf from Tin International AG ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/198647/lithium-australia-to-acquire-sadisdorf-from-tin-international-ag-198647.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) is set to acquire 100% of the Sadisdorf Lithium Tin Project in Germany from Tin International AG, subject to regulatory requirements.

Tin International AG had previously defined an Inferred JORC resource of 3.36 million tonnes grading 0.44% tin.

In mid-December 2017, Lithium Australia upgraded the deposit to an Inferred JORC resource of 25 million tonnes grading 0.45% lithium oxide.

Applying the SiLeach® process to extract minerals at Sadisdorf

Sadisdorf’s lithium is contained within lithium micas within alteration around tin mineralisation, the latter being the subject of historical mining.

The lithium micas can be readily concentrated after the removal of tin by conventional gravity separation.

Lithium has been very successfully extracted from Sadisdorf mica concentrates using the company’s proprietary SiLeach® process.

READ: Lithium Australia samples high-grade cobalt copper and lithium in Germany

Lithium Australia’s managing director Adrian Griffin said: “Acquisition of Sadisdorf is a key component of our European energy metal supply strategy.

“SiLeach® is the only practical means of realizing the full potential of deposits of this type where value can be recovered from the lithium, tin, potassium and other valuable by-products.

“Our recent cobalt exploration success in the region is testimony to the latent potential of Saxony as a supply centre of the European battery industry.”

Opportunity to supply Europe with lithium

Recently China’s BYD (SHE:002594) detailed plans to establish a battery factory in Europe while Northvolt, together with Siemens (ETR:SIE) and Scania, through an investment of €4 billion, will do likewise.

CATL, Samsung SDI, and LG Chem are following suit to establish European production capacity and SK Innovations will establish a factory in Hungary.

The planned capacity in Europe will dwarf the much-publicized Tesla Gigafactory and Europe may well become the highest concentration of energy metal consumption outside China.

With resources already established at Sadisdorf, and Lithium Australia’s commercialisation of its 100%-owned Sileach® process advanced, an opportunity exists to develop a domestic European supply chain.

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Tue, 12 Jun 2018 10:14:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/198647/lithium-australia-to-acquire-sadisdorf-from-tin-international-ag-198647.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia samples high-grade cobalt copper and lithium in Germany ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/198409/lithium-australia-samples-high-grade-cobalt-copper-and-lithium-in-germany-198409.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) has encountered more high-grade mineralisation in its second round of 16 field grab samples taken from the wholly owned Eichigt project in Germany.

Notably, grades ranged up to 1.47% cobalt, 0.54% copper and 0.71% lithium.

These early results for cobalt and copper confirm polymetallic mineralisation within the Eichigt project area.

READ: Lithium Australia discovers cobalt mineralisation at Eichigt

Lithium Australia’s managing director Adrian Griffin said: “The results of the first exploration campaign at Eichigt strongly supports our view that the license area we applied for was neglected during systematic exploration work carried out during the time of the German Demcratic Republic (GDR).

“The combination of cobalt, lithium and copper is an indication of the genesis of the mineralised system and the strong possibility of finding source granites and greisen style mineralization we see nearby at Sadisdorf.

Additional veins encountered, all remain open along strike and down dip

Griffin added: “The historic diggings indicate the strike extent, albeit remaining open.

“The down-dip extensions will be evaluated after delineation of the extent of surface mineralisation.”

Establishing a central processing hub in Europe

The 133 square kilometre Eichigt exploration licence was granted to Lithium Australia in January this year, adding to its existing Sadisdorf project, also in Saxony.

The company's objective is to establish a central processing hub in Europe to support battery production for the rapidly expanding electric vehicle industry.

It plans to use its 100%-owned SiLeach® process to recover lithium from its German projects, should doing so prove economically feasible.

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Thu, 07 Jun 2018 11:42:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/198409/lithium-australia-samples-high-grade-cobalt-copper-and-lithium-in-germany-198409.html
<![CDATA[Media files - Lithium Australia announces most recent, very high grades found at Eichigt project ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/stocktube/9484/lithium-australia-announces-most-recent-very-high-grades-found-at-eichigt-project-9484.html Wed, 06 Jun 2018 16:11:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/stocktube/9484/lithium-australia-announces-most-recent-very-high-grades-found-at-eichigt-project-9484.html <![CDATA[Media files - Cobalt discovery gives Lithium Australia 'another string to our bow' ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/stocktube/9422/cobalt-discovery-gives-lithium-australia-another-string-to-our-bow--9422.html Fri, 01 Jun 2018 16:26:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/stocktube/9422/cobalt-discovery-gives-lithium-australia-another-string-to-our-bow--9422.html <![CDATA[Media files - Lithium Australia 'closing the loop' on producing cathode powder from waste materials ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/stocktube/9407/lithium-australia-closing-the-loop-on-producing-cathode-powder-from-waste-materials-9407.html Thu, 31 May 2018 14:45:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/stocktube/9407/lithium-australia-closing-the-loop-on-producing-cathode-powder-from-waste-materials-9407.html <![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia discovers cobalt mineralisation at Eichigt ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/197870/lithium-australia-discovers-cobalt-mineralisation-at-eichigt-197870.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) has sampled up to 0.6% cobalt and 0.48% copper in maiden exploration at its wholly owned Eichigt project in Germany.

Initial exploration focused on copper-bearing quartz-veins that were subjected to small-scale mining activities during the 16th century.

Results from the first five grab samples are shown below.

Lithium Australia’s managing director Adrian Griffin said: “Strong, previously undescribed cobalt mineralisation at surface confirms the limited nature of past exploration.

“The diggings encountered are testimony to the considerable extent of the strike.

“Close to our Sadisdorf lithium project, and on the doorstep of the European EV manufacturers, this cobalt could prove a strategic feed into the burgeoning battery industry.”

READ: Lithium Australia hits 32 metres of lithium in first hole at Sadisdorf

Earlier this month, Lithium Australia intersected 32.19 metres grading 0.52% lithium in its first hole drilled at the Sadisdorf polymetallic tin-lithium project in Saxony, Germany.

Drilling was part of a three hole, 560-metre diamond program which is the first drilling at Sadisdorf in nearly 30 years.

Significant intersections of tin were also encountered with up to 11.65 metres grading 0.35% tin recorded.

The maiden drill program was designed to validate historical drilling data and test the outer boundaries of the mineral resource model.

Lithium Australia aspires to use its proprietary SiLeach® lithium processing technology to unlock the lithium potential and value of the Sadisdorf lithium-tin deposit.

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Wed, 30 May 2018 09:37:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/197870/lithium-australia-discovers-cobalt-mineralisation-at-eichigt-197870.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia producing lithium ion battery cathode materials ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/197492/lithium-australia-producing-lithium-ion-battery-cathode-materials-197492.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) through its subsidiary Very Small Particle Company Ltd (VSPC) is operating its advanced laboratory facilities in Queensland.

The facilities are producing lithium-ion battery (LIB) cathode materials at bench scale.

This marks strong progress towards commercialisation of the company’s patented battery cathode materials production technology.

READ: Lithium Australia stamps its authority as an emerging vertically integrated lithium play

Lithium Australia’s acquisition of the VSPC provides access to the most lucrative part of the LIB production cycle being the production of cathode powders.

The VSPC technology produces superior quality control in the production of a wide range of cathode powders.

That superiority includes the control of particle size and precise particle chemistry.

Potential customers to be able to test cathode materials

VSCP’s fourth generation lithium iron phosphate cathode material has previously received strong interest from international battery makers.

The VSPC cathode material performance exceeded that of an industry standard in tests completed late 2017.

Cathode materials will be available for customer evaluation from September 2018.

Recommissioning of the pilot production facilities

Recommissioning of the pilot production facilities is also at an advanced stage.

Wet commissioning will commence at the end of May, 2018.

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Wed, 23 May 2018 09:28:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/197492/lithium-australia-producing-lithium-ion-battery-cathode-materials-197492.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia discovers pegmatites in prolific lithium area of Western Australia ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/197322/lithium-australia-discovers-pegmatites-in-prolific-lithium-area-of-western-australia-197322.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) has identified lithium pegmatites at the Medcalf prospect in an area of Western Australia attracting investment from some of the world’s largest lithium companies.

Rock chip assays from samples have returned spodumene values ranging from 3.1% to 7.15% lithium oxide.

Geological mapping along with the sampling has confirmed some of these pegmatites as LCT (lithium, caesium, tantalum) types.

READ: Lithium Australia stamps its authority as an emerging vertically integrated lithium play

Medcalf is in the southeast part of the company’s Lake Johnson project in the southern Yilgarn region, about 45 kilometres southeast of its Mt Day prospect.

Managing director Adrian Griffin said: “The occurrence of LCT pegmatites adjacent to granites at Medcalf has regional geological significance.

“The pegmatites occur in the same greenstone sequence that abuts the same granite complex at Mt Day.

“Both locations have significant lithium mineralisation and there is good potential for locating further LCT pegmatites below cover, within the Lake Johnson project area.”

READ: Lithium Australia acquires Pilbara tenement prospective for lithium micas

Medcalf and Mt Day add to the potential of the Lake Johnson Lithium Project within the prolific Yilgarn Block.

The Lake Johnson tenement package underlain by regional magnetic data.

This hosts major deposits at Earl Grey of Kidman Resources Ltd (ASX:KDR) and SQM, Mt Marion of Neometals Limited (ASX:NMT), Gangfeng and Mineral Resources Limited (ASX:MIN); and Mt Cattlin of Galaxy Resources Limited (ASX:GXY).

Similar geological features

These lithium deposits, as well as Medcalf and Mt Day, have similar geological features.

At Medcalf, initial geological reconnaissance was conducted after interpretation of aerial photographs highlighted the potential for multiple pegmatites in 2017.

Outcropping pegmatites were identified during subsequent field inspections in April 2018 with recent geological mapping and sampling confirming some of these as LCT types.

Pegmatite swarms containing spodumene mineralisation outcrop in a zone 100 metres by 50 metres in area, within a larger area of pegmatites 250 metres wide by 500 metres long.

Further potential

Field inspection identified a pegmatite swarm centred on the highest hill in the area, where at least five pegmatites were located, and all containing spodumene.

The prospect area has moderate to low topographic relief and potential exists for additional pegmatites under cover.

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Mon, 21 May 2018 09:28:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/197322/lithium-australia-discovers-pegmatites-in-prolific-lithium-area-of-western-australia-197322.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia hits 32 metres of lithium in first hole at Sadisdorf ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/196782/lithium-australia-hits-32-metres-of-lithium-in-first-hole-at-sadisdorf-196782.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) has intersected 32.19 metres grading 0.52% lithium in its first hole drilled at the Sadisdorf polymetallic tin-lithium project in Saxony, Germany.

Drilling is part of the three hole, 560-metre diamond program which is the first drilling at Sadisdorf in nearly 30 years.

Significant intersections of tin were also encountered with up to 11.65 metres grading 0.35% tin recorded.

READ: Lithium Australia completes maiden drilling at lithium tin project in Germany

The maiden drill program was designed to validate historical drilling data and test the outer boundaries of the mineral resource model.

Lithium Australia aspires to use its proprietary SiLeach® lithium processing technology to unlock the lithium potential and value of the Sadisdorf lithium-tin deposit.

SiLeach® is suited for Sadisdorf’s mineralisation

Lithium Australia’s managing director Adrian Griffin said: “The mineralisation encountered in the first drill hole strongly supports our vision of unlocking the value of the historic tin-tungsten Sadisdorf mine by adding lithium as an additional value driver, at a location in close geographical proximity to emerging European new era battery markets.

“Our SiLeach® processing technology is ideally suited for processing Sadisdorf’s greisen-style polymetallic mineralisation which contains abundant lithium micas.

“With tin increasingly regarded as a strategic technology metal, the tin assays encountered also confirm our view of the potential of Sadisdorf as a significant polymetallic deposit.

“Test work on fresh samples will commence shortly and we look forward to the full assay results from the remaining two drill holes.”

READ: Lithium Australia to benefit from maiden lithium resource in electric vehicle manufacturer's backyard

During December 2017, a maiden JORC resource was estimated for Sadisdorf based on historical drilling and sampling.

The inferred estimate stands at 25 million tonnes grading 0.45% lithium.

Results for the final two diamond holes are expected towards the end of this month.

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Fri, 11 May 2018 09:23:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/196782/lithium-australia-hits-32-metres-of-lithium-in-first-hole-at-sadisdorf-196782.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia stamps its authority as an emerging vertically integrated lithium play ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/196699/lithium-australia-stamps-its-authority-as-an-emerging-vertically-integrated-lithium-play-196699.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) has made substantial ground in the last 12 months in achieving its goal of developing an integrated lithium company.

The group is developing the capabilities to capitalise on all major sectors of the lithium supply chain and in so doing closing the loop on the lithium production cycle.

While the lithium price has retraced from an all-time high in January, such is the strength of the outlook for the metal that it recently compensated for a production shortfall at Orocobre (ASX:ORE).

Bell Potter bullish on lithium price

While output at the company’s Olaroz project was down nearly 30% on a quarter-on-quarter basis, analysts at Bell Potter were not fazed by the development.

The broker pointed out that Orocobre had achieved a new record average price of US$13,530 per tonne and that pricing would offset any downside from the production shortfall.

Bell Potter expects robust pricing to continue with its 2019 and 2020 lithium carbonate projections standing at US$15,125 per tonne and US$15,400 per tonne respectively.

Hence, while one piece of bad news at Orocobre triggered a share price decline from $5.24 to $5.01, a month later it is trading at $5.65.

This highlights the fact that stocks exposed to the sector, such as Lithium Australia, need to be assessed on their medium to long-term merits.

An important backdrop for Lithium Australia

The Orocobre scenario is important to consider when examining Lithium Australia’s trading patterns, particularly in 2018.

After mainly trading in the vicinity of 20 cents in the latter half of 2017 and the first few months of 2018, the company's shares have dipped to around 13 cents.

As one of the few vertically integrated players in the lithium sector with a clearly defined medium to long-term outlook, this retracement could represent a buying opportunity.

Closing the loop in production cycle

As the company explains, its strategy is to close the loop in the lithium production cycle.

Lithium Australia has grown its resource base and developed a world-class processing technology called SiLeach®.

The company has also acquired an enterprise that has proprietary processes for the production of lithium-ion battery cathode materials.

With regards to the company’s SiLeach technology where a pilot plant is nearing completion, Lithium Australia managing director Adrian Griffin said: “The FEED study is advancing well and the improvements in lithium recovery are very encouraging.

READ: Lithium Australia nears completion of design for cutting edge SiLeach plant

“We're pleased with the increase in confidence around by-product recovery, which is an important aspect of the SiLeach revenue stream.

“We believe it will allow us to produce lithium chemicals from minerals but at the same low unit cost as that of the brine producers.

“Preliminary discussions with potential offtake partners have been encouraging.

"Our planned laboratory-scale pilot run, while aimed primarily at finalising the flowsheet for construction, will generate significant amounts of lithium chemical product for testing by potential offtake partners.”

Sadisdorf is an ideal fit

From a resource perspective, the company’s farm-in joint venture with Tin International AG is a coup as it provides an opportunity to cash in on its proprietary technology.

The Sadisdorf tin mine in Saxony, Germany, has tin mineralisation which is enveloped by a lithium-mica alteration.

Application of Lithium Australia’s SiLeach technology provides an opportunity to combine the value of the tin with that of the lithium.

For other miners, the lithium content within the ore mined is considered waste.

Resource modelling has confirmed that the dormant tin mine, which contains significant lithium mineralisation, can be considered a polymetallic deposit.

Substantial value can be extracted from lithium, tin and tungsten.

Resource upgraded

Moreover, application of SiLeach has the potential to provide significant by-product credits such as potassium sulphate fertiliser and sodium silicate.

Tin International AG had previously defined an inferred tin resource of 3.36 million tonnes grading 0.44% tin at a cut-off of 0.25%.

Following reanalysis and reinterpretation of historical drilling and underground sampling, the inferred resource now stands at 25 million tonnes grading 0.45% lithium.

Large-scale SiLeach pilot plant

Engineering design studies and financial modelling have shown that LIT’s proposed SiLeach large-scale pilot plant can produce lithium chemicals from waste.

This is in the form of lithium micas, and the studies have also identified multiple avenues for more substantial capital and operating cost reductions.

The pilot plant is nearing completion with metallurgical test work demonstrating improved lithium recovery.

Further, there is the potential to produce high-quality fertiliser as a by-product which will enhance the project economics.

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Thu, 10 May 2018 13:43:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/196699/lithium-australia-stamps-its-authority-as-an-emerging-vertically-integrated-lithium-play-196699.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia nears completion of design for cutting-edge SiLeach plant ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/195909/lithium-australia-nears-completion-of-design-for-cutting-edge-sileach-plant-195909.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) is nearing completion of the design for a cutting-edge large-scale pilot plant to demonstrate its SiLeach® hydrometallurgical process.

The plant is aimed at demonstrating the SiLeach® process to extract lithium and by-products at commercial scale from lithium micas.

Front-end engineering and design (FEED) activities are progressing as planned and are scheduled for completion in the September quarter of 2018.

READ: Lithium Australia NL identifying feed for large-scale SiLeach pilot plant

Detailed metallurgical test work is demonstrating improved lithium recovery.

This work is further enhancing the SiLeach® flowsheet and the potential to produce high-quality fertiliser as a by-product is enhancing project economics.

Managing director Adrian Griffin said: “The FEED study is advancing well and the improvements in lithium recovery are very encouraging.

“We’re pleased with the increase in confidence around by-product recovery, which is an important aspect of the SiLeach® revenue stream.

“We believe it will allow us to produce lithium chemicals from minerals but at the same low unit cost as that of the brine producers.”

No roasting required

The SiLeach® process is a halide-accelerated, sulphuric acid digestion system, operated at atmospheric pressure.

No roasting is required, significantly reducing the energy footprint when compared with conventional lithium extraction technology.

The process also benefits from a range of potential by-product credits.

Study shows SiLeach benefits

Lithium Australia is building the large-scale pilot plant (LSPP) after a preliminary feasibility study demonstrated the ability of the process to recover lithium chemicals and valuable by-products.

In many instances, lithium micas previously recovered during mining activities have been consigned to tailings dams and mine dumps as waste, due to a lack of metallurgical processing technology.

SiLeach® has the potential to unlock these resources economically.

Plant construction a key step

Construction of the LSPP is a key step in proving SiLeach® at a commercial scale.

Flotation test work on samples of lepidolite.

At full production SiLeach® will facilitate the production of high-quality lithium chemicals from abundant non-brine mineral resources at a cost similar to those of brine producers.

This will be done without the environmental risks associated with conventional roasting or large evaporation ponds.

READ: Lithium Australia able to separate lithium using ore-sorting technology

Planning is underway for a laboratory-scale pilot trial at ANSTO Minerals of the anticipated LSPP feed composition, using concentrates generated from the target sources.

Intended to confirm final flowsheet selection and impurity removal unit processes, the trial should further reduce the risk profile of the LSPP and augment existing bench-scale test work results.

Offtake discussions

The laboratory-scale trial will generate enough lithium chemicals to provide product samples for potential offtake partners, those samples being representative of the commercial product.

Griffin said: "Preliminary discussions with potential offtake partners have been encouraging.

“Our planned laboratory-scale pilot run, while aimed primarily at finalising the flowsheet for construction, will generate significant amounts of lithium chemical product for testing by potential offtake partners.”

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Fri, 27 Apr 2018 10:22:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/195909/lithium-australia-nears-completion-of-design-for-cutting-edge-sileach-plant-195909.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia acquires Pilbara tenement prospective for lithium micas ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/195417/lithium-australia-acquires-pilbara-tenement-prospective-for-lithium-micas-195417.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) has acquired an exploration licence prospective for lithium within the Moolyella tin field in Western Australia’s Pilbara region.

Pegmatites have been identified in the region containing abundant lithium micas, which are often associated with alluvial deposits of tin and tantalum.

Lithium Australia has purchased the tenement from Anova Metals Australia Pty Ltd for consideration of $25,000 in cash and shares valued at $25,000.

Moolyella “has the right ingredients”

Managing director Adrian Griffin said: “The abundance of fertile granites and associated pegmatites in the Pilbara has seen the region emerge as the greatest lithium province in the world.

“There remains great potential for further discoveries and Moolyella has all the right ingredients.”

READ: Lithium Australia NL identifying feed for large-scale SiLeach pilot plant

Lithium micas are a preferred feed for Lithium Australia’s SiLeach® process for which the company aims to build a large-scale pilot plant as part of the commercialisation process.

The Moolyella project covers targets within the Fig Tree Gneiss, which is part of the Tambina Supersuite.

Outcropping pegmatites occur as swarms with individual dykes being up to 15 metres thick and traceable for up to 700 metres along strike.

The exploration licence was granted on July 4, 2017, and is about 18 kilometres from Marble Bar and 160 kilometres southeast of Port Hedland.

Conversion of $100,000

Lithium Australia has also agreed to issue shares to the value of $100,000 to Arena Investors LP to satisfy a conversion notice which forms part of a $18.27 million convertible note facility.

The company advised on March 1, 2018, that it had secured the facility with Arena, a leading US institutional investor with more than US$750 million in assets under management.

READ: Lithium Australia recommissioning cathode powder plant

These unsecured notes have a face value of A$21 million and, subject to certain conditions, will be issued by Lithium Australia at a discount of 13%.

They will be drawn down in six tranches with the first tranche received by the company, which triggered Arena’s request to convert a minimum parcel of shares to the value of $100,000.

Lithium Australia is aiming for a circular economy in lithium-ion battery supply.

READ: Lithium Australia able to separate lithium using ore-sorting technology

Lithium Australia aspires to 'close the loop' on the energy-metal cycle.

Its disruptive extraction processes are designed to convert all lithium silicates to lithium chemicals, from which advanced components for the battery industry can be created.

By uniting resources and the best available technology, Lithium Australia seeks to establish a vertically integrated lithium processing business.

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Fri, 20 Apr 2018 10:06:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/195417/lithium-australia-acquires-pilbara-tenement-prospective-for-lithium-micas-195417.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia able to separate lithium using ore-sorting technology ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/195305/lithium-australia-able-to-separate-lithium-using-ore-sorting-technology-195305.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) has received positive results from ore sorting test work at the 80% owned Lepidolite Hill Lithium Project in Western Australia.

The x-ray ore sorting has successfully separated lithium micas, which could importantly act as feed for the company’s proposed large-scale pilot plant it intends to build.

Furthermore, the test work has revealed the potential for recovery of petalite, a lithium silicate which is a saleable item if concentrated.

READ: Lithium Australia NL identifying feed for large-scale SiLeach pilot plant

Lithium Australia’s managing director Arian Griffin said: “Although our aim at Lepidolite Hill is exploitation of lithium mica, it's not surprising to find such abundant petalite in the mine dumps.

“Lepidolite Hill operated as a petalite mine in the 1970s, and perhaps the recovery of the target minerals was not as good as the operators would have liked! Ore-sorting will certainly enhance rapid separation of the lepidolite.

“That said, we'll also devote significant attention to the recovery of other lithium minerals that result in a grade of about 1.8% lithium oxide in the reject material.

“We'll probably drill at the south end of the existing pit, to see how far the lithium mineralisation extends beyond what was left in the pit wall.”

Test work results make Lepidolite Hill a top candidate

Earlier in March 2018, Lithium Australia noted that the Lepidolite Hill lithium deposit was emerging as a potentially valuable feed option for its proposed large-scale SiLeach® pilot plant.

The initial ore sorting test work done on historical mine waste at Lepidolite Hill supported this location as a possible feed option for the pilot plant.

Now Lithium Australia considers there is the potential to not only separate out petalite, as well as lepidolite, from surface stockpiles but also to undertake further exploration at the project.

Exploration would target possible in-situ lithium resources outside and below the current historical open-pit mine workings.

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Thu, 19 Apr 2018 08:36:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/195305/lithium-australia-able-to-separate-lithium-using-ore-sorting-technology-195305.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia recommissioning cathode powder plant ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/195201/lithium-australia-recommissioning-cathode-powder-plant-195201.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) has finalised its acquisition of 99.7% of the equity in the Very Small Particle Company (VSPC), a Brisbane-based technology company.

VSPC has spent 14 years and $30 million developing some of the world’s most advanced manufacturing techniques for the production of cathode materials.

These materials are critical components of lithium-ion batteries.

Re-commissioning of the cathode plant

Re-commissioning of the 2-4 tonne per annum cathode powder plant at the Brisbane VSPC facility is underway.

Plant inspections and servicing are underway, as is evaluation of equipment upgrades, to prepare for resumption of production in July 2018.

Furthermore, a recruitment drive for senior scientists and operational staff has commenced.

READ: Lithium Australia enters high-margin end of battery metals market after completing acquisition

Lithium Australia’s managing director Adrian Griffin said: “Recommissioning the VSPC pilot plant is a challenging task, but many of the past scientific and operating staff have made themselves available to ensure success.

“We welcome their assistance and participation in our plan to provide the world’s battery producers with the best available cathode materials.”

READ: Lithium Australia completes maiden drilling at lithium tin project in Germany

Recently, Lithium Australia completed its maiden drilling program at the Sadisdorf polymetallic tin-lithium project in Saxony, Germany.

The three hole, 560-metre diamond drilling program commenced in mid-December 2017 and was completed last week.

The program was designed to validate historical drilling data and increase confidence in future mineral resource estimates.

Lithium Australia is farming into a joint venture at Sadisdorf with German company Tin International AG.

Sadisdorf has the potential to provide feed to a commercial scale SiLeach® lithium carbonate plant.

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Wed, 18 Apr 2018 09:20:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/195201/lithium-australia-recommissioning-cathode-powder-plant-195201.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia completes maiden drilling at lithium tin project in Germany ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/194987/lithium-australia-completes-maiden-drilling-at-lithium-tin-project-in-germany-194987.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) has completed its maiden drilling program at the Sadisdorf polymetallic tin-lithium project in Saxony, Germany.

The three hole, 560-metre diamond drilling program commenced in mid-December 2017 and was completed last week.

The program was designed to validate historical drilling data and increase confidence in future mineral resource estimates.

Down-hole surveys planned and assays pending

Down-hole geophysical surveys were planned for the two days following completion.

Completion of sampling and assaying of the remaining core will be a priority over April and May.

A further update from Sadisdorf is expected including assay results from the completed drill program in coming weeks.

Potential for a commercial scale SiLeach® lithium carbonate plant

Lithium Australia is farming into a joint venture at Sadisdorf with German company Tin International AG.

Sadisdorf has the potential to provide feed to a commercial scale SiLeach® lithium carbonate plant.

Furthermore, it is located on the doorstep of the German automotive industry, which is rapidly gearing up to produce large numbers of electric vehicles.

READ: Lithium Australia to benefit from maiden lithium resource in electric vehicle manufacturer's backyard

Partner Tin International AG had previously defined an Inferred JORC resource of 3.36 million tonnes grading 0.44% tin.

In mid-December 2017, Lithium Australia revealed an Inferred JORC resource of 25 million tonnes grading 0.45% lithium oxide.

Lithium Australia’s SiLeach® processing technology is suited to unlocking the lithium value of historical silicate deposits such as Sadisdorf.

READ: Lithium Australia NL identifying feed for large-scale SiLeach pilot plant

Over in Western Australia, Lithium Australia is in the final stages of advancing its large-scale SiLeach® pilot plant and is assessing feed sources for the first 12 months of operation.

Significantly, the Lepidolite Hill lithium deposit, which Lithium Australia has an 80% share in, is emerging as a potentially valuable feed option.

The company’s SiLeach® processing technology is in the process of being commercialised through the large-scale SiLeach® pilot plant.

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Mon, 16 Apr 2018 08:33:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/194987/lithium-australia-completes-maiden-drilling-at-lithium-tin-project-in-germany-194987.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia’s drilling in Germany set to unlock lithium potential ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/194810/lithium-australias-drilling-in-germany-set-to-unlock-lithium-potential-194810.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) is expected to complete its maiden drilling campaign at the Sadisdorf polymetallic tin-lithium project in Saxony, Germany, today.

The Sadisdorf project is located on the doorstep of the German automotive industry, which is gearing up to produce large numbers of electric vehicles having lithium-ion batteries.

Significantly, the Sadisdorf project has the potential to provide feed for a commercial scale SiLeach® lithium carbonate plant.

READ: Lithium Australia NL secures $18 mln to develop Sileach® pilot plant and battery cathode plant

Lithium Australia’s SiLeach® technology efficiently digests and recovers all significant metal values from the minerals treated and can be applied to a wide range of lithium feedstock.

Assays pending for encouraging drill cores

A drilling program commenced at the Sadisdorf project in December 2017 to validate historical drilling data and increase confidence in future mineral resource estimates.

Geological logging of the core has shown encouraging visual indications. Completion of sampling and assaying of the remaining core will be a priority over April and May.

Unlocking the lithium potential of the historic tin-tungsten mine

The company is expected to provide a further update from Sadisdorf, including assay results from the completed drill program, in the coming weeks.

Lithium Australia managing director Adrian Griffin said: “The mineralisation encountered in the drilling to date supports our vision of unlocking the value of the historic tin-tungsten mine Sadisdorf by adding lithium as an additional value driver.

“Further metallurgical evaluation, including SiLeach® testing, will follow the drilling program with results being announced as they become available.”

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Thu, 12 Apr 2018 13:40:00 +1000 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/194810/lithium-australias-drilling-in-germany-set-to-unlock-lithium-potential-194810.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia NL identifying feed for large-scale SiLeach pilot plant ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/192796/lithium-australia-nl-identifying-feed-for-large-scale-sileach-pilot-plant-192796.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) is in the final stages of advancing its large-scale SiLeach® pilot plant and is assessing feed sources for the first 12 months of operation.

Significantly, the Lepidolite Hill lithium deposit, which Lithium Australia has an 80% share in, is emerging as a potentially valuable feed option.

Encouraging results from ore sorting test work done on historical mine waste at Lepidolite Hill support this location as a possible feed option for the pilot plant.

Capitalising on various types of mine waste to deliver value-added products

Applying rejected material from Lepidolite Hill to innovative ore-sorting technology perfectly illustrates how Lithium Australia intends to produce SiLeach® feed from mine waste.

Adrian Griffin, managing director, said: “Lithium Australia is striving to improve the sustainability of the energy-metal sector.

“Recovery of lithium from mine waste is a great example of that, and we are strongly focused on opportunities in both Europe and Western Australia.”

READ: Lithium Australia NL secures $18 mln to develop Sileach® pilot plant and battery cathode plant

The ore-sorting tests indicate the possibility of rejecting a large proportion of the waste material.

Next, the material newly recovered by ore sorting will now be assayed.

The assessment of pilot plant feed continues with further, similar lepidolite occurrences in Western Australia also under investigation.

Commercialising the SiLeach processing technology

The company’s SiLeach® processing technology is in the process of being commercialised through the large-scale SiLeach® pilot plant.

The technology efficiently digests and recovers all significant metal values from the minerals treated and can be applied to a wide range of lithium feedstock.

In the first instance, Lithium Australia aims to recover lithium from silicates with low energy consumption and high metal recoveries.

Recent acquisition provides exposure to lithium-ion battery cathodes

The recent acquisition of Very Small Particle Company (VSPC) provides access to the most advanced cathode-powder production technology.

Potentially, this technology gives Lithium Australia the benefit of the most significant value-adding step in the lithium-ion battery production process.

By applying the VSPC technology, Lithium Australia has the opportunity to control the supply chain from waste material through to cathode powder.

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Thu, 08 Mar 2018 09:08:00 +1100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/192796/lithium-australia-nl-identifying-feed-for-large-scale-sileach-pilot-plant-192796.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia NL secures $18 mln to develop Sileach® pilot plant and battery cathode plant ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/192397/lithium-australia-nl-secures-18-mln-to-develop-sileach-pilot-plant-and-battery-cathode-plant-192397.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) has secured a $18.27 million convertible note facility to advance its large-scale Sileach® pilot plant and lithium-ion battery cathode pilot plant.

The funds are being provided by Arena Investors LP, a major U.S. based institutional investor with more than US$750 million in assets under management.

Adrian Griffin, managing director, said: "Lithium Australia has previously announced its intention to proceed with the large-scale Sileach® pilot plant program, and its intention to recommission the Very Small Particle Company cathode pilot plant.

"The Arena facility is a major element of the funding package required for these endeavours to be successfully implemented."

READ: Lithium Australia commits to building large-scale SiLeach® pilot plant

The company recently demonstrated confidence in its SiLeach® lithium recovery technology by committing to build a large-scale pilot plant.

Lithium Australia expects to complete agreements this quarter resulting in supply of the plant site, infrastructure, reagent supplies and process feed material.

READ: Lithium Australia enters high-margin end of battery metals market after completing acquisition

The company also made a move to enter the high-margin end of the battery metals market after completing the acquisition of Very Small Particle Company (VSPC).

The acquisition provides Lithium Australia with exposure to the manufacture of cathode powders, which is the most profitable process step in the battery production cycle.

Multi-tranche convertible note facility

The convertible notes to be issued to Arena Investors have a face value of $21 million and will be issued at a discount of 13%. The notes are unsecured and will be drawn-down in six separate tranches.

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Thu, 01 Mar 2018 15:20:00 +1100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/192397/lithium-australia-nl-secures-18-mln-to-develop-sileach-pilot-plant-and-battery-cathode-plant-192397.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia enters high-margin end of battery metals market after completing acquisition ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/192315/lithium-australia-enters-high-margin-end-of-battery-metals-market-after-completing-acquisition-192315.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) will enter the high-margin end of the battery metals market after completing its acquisition of the Very Small Particle Company (VSPC).

The acquisition provides Lithium Australia with exposure to the manufacture of cathode powders, which is the most profitable process step in the battery production cycle.

Batteries produced from VSPC cathode materials outperform industry benchmarks.

READ: Lithium Australia aims to ‘close the loop’ on energy-metal cycle by completing acquisition

Adrian Griffin, managing director, said: “Supply shortages are already a reality in the lithium-ion battery space.

“VSPC provides us with the opportunity to manufacture the most advanced cathode materials in the world, at the high-margin end of the battery metals market.

“Importantly, VSPC will also allow us to capitalise on waste batteries as a feed source.

“Acquisition elevates Lithium Australia's role”

“The VSPC acquisition elevates Lithium Australia’s role as a processor of primary materials to that of a sustainable producer of lithium-ion battery components.

"This step is not only a great advance for Lithium Australia but also a step in the right direction for the development of sustainable energy technologies on an industrial scale.”

The acquisition of the unlisted, Brisbane-based public company was completed just 48 hours after Lithium Australia lodged compliance documents for its takeover offer.

Acceptances received for 99.7%

The company has received acceptances for 99.7% of VSPC’s issued capital.

VSPC is the brainchild of a number of prominent Queensland-based university research workers.

They spent 14 years and circa $30 million developing what Lithium Australia believes to be the world’s most advanced cathode production technology for lithium-ion batteries.

The VSPC process has the ability to precisely control the particle size and chemistry of cathode powders, using patented technology to generate the initial particle directly from solution.

Production process simplified

This greatly simplifies the production process, improves quality control and reduces cost. The particle genesis is compatible with other energy-metal technologies being developed by Lithium Australia.

READ: Lithium Australia commits to building large-scale SiLeach® pilot plant

These include the recycling of lithium-ion batteries via RCARC and production of lithium chemicals from unconventional sources via SiLeach®.

Adding VSPC to Lithium Australia's technology base not only provides exposure to the manufacture of cathode powders but also 'closes the loop' of the energy-metal cycle.

Rebirth of used materials

This is done by enabling the rebirth of used materials in the form of new battery cathode powders.

VSPC owns a pilot plant that incorporates cathode powder production as well as battery production and testing.

Plant to be re-commissioned

Lithium Australia will expedite re-commissioning of that plant, with a view to providing a range of cathode materials for assessment by major battery manufacturers.

The company is recruiting the staff required to undertake this challenging task.

It is also negotiating a range of technical service agreements to provide the support necessary to ensure success.

Lithium Australia’s disruptive extraction processes are designed to convert lithium silicates to lithium chemicals, from which advanced components for the battery industry can be created.

By uniting resources and the best available technology, the company seeks to establish a vertically integrated lithium processing business.

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Wed, 28 Feb 2018 15:07:00 +1100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/192315/lithium-australia-enters-high-margin-end-of-battery-metals-market-after-completing-acquisition-192315.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia aims to ‘close the loop’ on energy-metal cycle by completing acquisition ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/192217/lithium-australia-aims-to-close-the-loop-on-energy-metal-cycle-by-completing-acquisition-192217.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) is advancing its acquisition of a battery cathode developer as it seeks to 'close the loop' on the energy-metal cycle through its processing technologies.

As part of its acquisition of unlisted public company, the Very Small Particle Company Ltd (VSPC), Lithium Australia has executed a binding share sale and purchase agreement.

This agreement, which was also signed by major VSPC shareholders, is subject to a minimum acceptance of 75%.

READ: Lithium Australia commits to building large-scale SiLeach® pilot plant

The proposed acquisition will provide Lithium Australia with the ability to deliver cathode materials into the global lithium-ion battery supply chain from a number of sources.

Adrian Griffin, managing director, said: “The ability to utilise mine waste, unconventional lithium minerals and waste batteries in the production of high-quality cathode materials is the ultimate test of sustainability.

“This approach will help reduce the pressure on primary sources of energy metals.

“Better resource utilisation”

“The integrated technologies available to Lithium Australia will allow for better resource utilisation and reduce the quantity of valuable materials going to landfill.

“It will also enable the rebirth of many materials as new generation lithium-ion batteries.”

The agreement includes Lithium Australia lodging a transaction-specific prospectus with ASIC to facilitate the consideration payable for the acquisition.

Innovative production technology

Brisbane-based VSPC has researched and developed some of the world’s most innovative new-era cathode material production technology.

The VSPC process can potentially deliver a wide range of cathode materials for lithium-ion batteries, with superior control of product particle size and chemistry.

Lithium Australia is aiming for a circular economy in lithium-ion battery supply.

VSPC’s simple and cost-effective process is capable of generating superior cathode powders over a wide range of cathode chemistries.

Tests confirm the ability of VSPC materials

The ability of batteries manufactured from VSPC cathode materials to outperform industry benchmarks was recently confirmed by independent tests at a leading German battery laboratory.

VSPC assets include intellectual property and a decommissioned pilot plant in Brisbane designed to produce complex metal oxides/phosphate powders for production of lithium-ion batteries.

The plant incorporates Australia’s most advanced lithium-ion battery laboratory/testing facility as well as equipment for cathode coating and battery-cell production.

READ: Lithium Australia’s partner adds key additional tenure for lithium project in Germany

Lithium Australia aims to ‘close the loop’ on energy-metal usage and rebirth waste materials as superior cathode powders for the manufacture of lithium-ion batteries.

Initial feed sources for cathode materials include unconventional silicates such as micas contained in mine waste, and low-grade and contaminated spodumene concentrates.

Other sources are waste materials from battery manufacturers and used lithium-ion batteries.

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Tue, 27 Feb 2018 10:02:00 +1100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/192217/lithium-australia-aims-to-close-the-loop-on-energy-metal-cycle-by-completing-acquisition-192217.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia commits to building large-scale SiLeach® pilot plant ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/190960/lithium-australia-commits-to-building-large-scale-sileach-pilot-plant-190960.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) has demonstrated confidence in its SiLeach® lithium recovery technology by committing to build a large-scale pilot plant.

The company has moved quickly by approving the front-end engineering and design (FEED) process and is procuring long-lead equipment.

It aims to reduce the time frame through to commissioning and production, which is scheduled for early 2021.

The SiLeach® hydrometallurgical process is used to extract and recover lithium values from lithium bearing materials.

READ: Lithium Australia’s SiLeach® process confirmed as novel and patentable

Lithium Australia expects to complete agreements this quarter resulting in supply of the plant site; infrastructure including power, water, gas, road and rail; major reagent supplies; and process feed material.

Adrian Griffin, managing director, said: “Our commitment to advancing the process to an industrial scale is a critical element in the research and development required to bring a superior process into the lithium industry.

“Success will allow us to utilise mine waste in the production of lithium chemicals, one of our great sustainability goals.”

Waste streams a source of lithium

Large quantities of lithium continue to be discharged to waste streams emanating from the production of a range of industrial minerals.

Such waste streams, which most commonly contain lithium micas, may prove the most cost-effective source of primary lithium.

The development of more efficient processing technologies to allow exploitation of such materials is a major corporate achievement of Lithium Australia.

In July 2017, Lithium Australia completed a preliminary feasibility study on the application of its SiLeach® technology to the recovery of lithium chemicals from micas.

Water balance a critical area

The study identified the water balance as a critical area for consideration.

Innovative process steps have subsequently been developed to improve the water balance, which have also reduced capital costs.

Processes have also been developed that capitalise on co-production of potassium sulphate, a critical step in achieving optimum financial performance.

This increased confidence led to the company’s decision to build a large-scale pilot plant.

Annual rate of 2,500 tonnes

The plant is designed to produce lithium carbonate equivalent at an annual rate of 2,500 tonnes from circa 27,500 tonnes of lepidolite mica feed.

Pilot plant output is around one-tenth the scale of output of a full-scale commercial production facility.

Target feed material during the first 12 months of the plant's operation will be primary ore mined close to the proposed location of the plant.

Crushing, grinding and concentration circuits will therefore be required at the feed end of the plant.

READ: Lithium Australia attracts speculative buy recommendation from Perth broker

Lithium Australia has been involved in research and development of chemical processing technology for the economic recovery of lithium from spodumene and lepidolite minerals since 2014.

This led to the development of the SiLeach® process, a fluoride-accelerated sulphuric-acid leach at elevated temperature but atmospheric pressure.

Constructing and operating the pilot plant is considered a necessary step in the commercialisation of SiLeach®, in that it will integrate data collected on an industrial scale to evaluate the next step, which is full commercial production.

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Thu, 01 Feb 2018 15:21:00 +1100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/190960/lithium-australia-commits-to-building-large-scale-sileach-pilot-plant-190960.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia’s partner adds key additional tenure for lithium project in Germany ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/190587/lithium-australias-partner-adds-key-additional-tenure-for-lithium-project-in-germany-190587.html Lithium Australia NL’s (ASX:LIT) joint venture partner in the Sadisdorf project, Tin International AG, has been awarded key additional tenure near the project.

The Sadisdorf project is located in the Eastern Ore Mountains of Saxony, Germany.

Potential to increase the maiden resource of 25 million tonnes

The initial focus of the joint venture agreement is the dormant Sadisdorf tin mine, which is enveloped in a pervasive lithium alteration halo and has a maiden resource of 25 million tonnes at 0.21% lithium.

READ: Lithium Australia granted licence in lithium tungsten region of Germany

Now the mining authority in Saxony has granted Tin International an additional exploration licence covering 15 square kilometres around the Hegelshöhe hillside, just 5 kilometres southeast of the Sadisdorf licence.

Hegelshöhe is located in the same regional geological formation that hosts the lithium mica deposits of Sadisdorf, Zinnwald and Cinovech (Czech Republic).

Substantial tin-lithium potential in the area

The Hegelshöhe licence shares its northern border with the Falkenhain, currently being explored by Deutsche Lithium and partner Bacanora Minerals Ltd (CVE:BCN).

On the basis of historic mining and exploration activities, Tin International has a significant potential to discover tin-lithium mineralisation in the area.

READ: Lithium Australia’s SiLeach® process confirmed as novel and patentable

The application of the SiLeach® process to recover both lithium and a range of by-products has the potential to breathe new life into the Sadisdorf operation, where drilling has already commenced to upgrade the resource.

SiLeach® was recently confirmed by the Australian Patent Office as a novel and inventive process which meets the requirements for industrial applicability.

Lithium Australia is on track to approve the construction of a large-scale SiLeach® pilot plant (LSPP) in 2018 and has recently stated its intention to fund construction off its own balance sheet.

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Thu, 25 Jan 2018 13:17:00 +1100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/190587/lithium-australias-partner-adds-key-additional-tenure-for-lithium-project-in-germany-190587.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia's graphite spin-off admitted to ASX ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/190205/lithium-australia-s-graphite-spin-off-admitted-to-asx-190205.html Lithium Australia NL’s (ASX:LIT) non-core graphite assets spin-off company BlackEarth Minerals has been admitted to the Official List of ASX.

BlackEarth Minerals NL (ASX:BEM) is expected to begin trading at 13:00 on Friday 19 January.

Almost 29 million ordinary shares were issued at $0.20 per share, raising almost $5.46 million in the IPO and BlackEarth will have circa 61 million shares on issue when it first trades.

READ: BlackEarth Minerals to hit ASX boards with focus on graphite in Australia and Madagascar

Adrian Griffin, managing director of Lithium Australia, said: “Lithium Australia’s clear strategy is to create value for its shareholders.

“The float of its graphite interest is a prime example, giving all shareholders exposure through their LIT shareholdings and the opportunity to directly participate in BEM.

“LIT’s interest in the Very Small Particle Company (lithium ion battery cathode production technology) will add further value as LIT expands its participation in the battery industry.”

Lithium Australia holds 18% interest

Lithium Australia is the major shareholder with 11 million fully paid shares for an interest of more than 18%.

It also holds 1 million partly paid shares.

Spin-off company has six projects

BlackEarth has four graphite exploration projects in Western Australia - Donnelly River, Greenhills, Northern Gully and Yalbra.

It also has two more advanced projects in southern Madagascar - Maniry and Ianapera.

Initially, the company will focus on early exploration for graphite on its Western Australian projects, as well as further development of the Madagascan projects.

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Thu, 18 Jan 2018 12:40:00 +1100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/190205/lithium-australia-s-graphite-spin-off-admitted-to-asx-190205.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia granted licence in lithium tungsten region of Germany ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/189991/lithium-australia-granted-licence-in-lithium-tungsten-region-of-germany-189991.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) (FRA:3MW) has been granted a 133 square kilometre exploration licence in Saxony, Germany. 

The prospective exploration ground is located in a region where lithium mineralisation is often associated with tin and tungsten mineralisation.

Notable deposits featuring the minerals in the region include Cinovec, Zinnwald and Sadisdorf.

At Sadisdorf, Lithium Australia is farming into an historic tin mine with a pervasive lithium greisen halo.

Can earn up to 50% of Sadisdorf

Lithium Australia can earn up to 50% from Tin International AG of the Sadisdorf Lithium Project in Germany.

The company plans to use its 100%-owned SiLeach® process to recover lithium from Sadisdorf.

The project may have sufficient resources to sustain 10 years of lithium carbonate production at a rate of 25,000 tonnes per annum.

Central European lithium processing hub

The objective is to establish a central processing hub in Europe to support battery production for the rapidly expanding electric vehicle industry.

Sadisdorf already has the potential to supply lithium to the German auto industry and the company is also looking to areas never before explored systematically.

In this regard, central Europe offers many opportunities.

Drilling underway at Sadisdorf

Drilling at Sadisdorf has now resumed, with initial results expected in February of this year.

The drilling program is scheduled for completion at the end of March, with final results expected in May 2018.

Drilling follows a maiden resource estimate

Adrian Griffin, managing director, said: “The drill program at Sadisdorf – which follows its maiden mineral resource estimate of 25 million tonnes at 0.45% lithium oxide – aims to confirm historical data, as well as provide additional data to expand the known resource.

“We are looking forward to receiving the first results in support of that historical data and to confirm our interpretation of mineralisation and geology at that project.

“We are also pleased to announce the acquisition of another land package in Saxony that has, since 2015, been known to host lithium minerals.

“We feel that this relatively recent identification, and the acquisition itself, further strengthen Lithium Australia's position in central Europe and support its aspiration to become a prime supplier to Europe's burgeoning battery industry.”

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Mon, 15 Jan 2018 15:53:00 +1100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/189991/lithium-australia-granted-licence-in-lithium-tungsten-region-of-germany-189991.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia’s SiLeach® process confirmed as novel and patentable ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/189925/lithium-australias-sileach-process-confirmed-as-novel-and-patentable-189925.html Lithium Australia NL’s (ASX:LIT) SiLeach® technology has been confirmed by the Australian Patent Office as a novel and inventive process which meets the requirements for industrial applicability.

SiLeach® hydrometallurgical process is used to extract and recover lithium values from lithium bearing materials.

Significantly, the confirmation from the patent office is expected to pave the way for the grant of corresponding patents for the process around the world.

Adrian Griffin, managing director, said: “The grant of patents for SiLeach® will bolster Lithium Australia's desire to create greater sustainability in the lithium industry by capitalising on the abundance of lithium-bearing waste materials.

“It will also dovetail perfectly with our interest in VSPC cathode production technology, giving us the ability to process mine waste right through to the production of battery cathodes.

“Currently, no other company has the tools required to achieve this sustainability goal.”

Pending patent protection ensured in 148 countries

In February 2017, Lithium Australia submitted an international patent application for the SiLeach® process under the Patent Cooperation Treaty administered by the World Intellectual Property Organisation.

A rigorous preliminary examination of the patent claims conducted by the Australian Patent Office ensued, leading to confirmation in the International Preliminary Report on Patentability.

This ensures pending patent protection in 148 countries for the SiLeach® technology.

Large-scale SiLeach® pilot plant on track for 2018

The company is on track to approve the construction of a large-scale SiLeach® pilot plant (LSPP) in early 2018 and has recently stated its intention to fund construction off its own balance sheet.

Notably, pilot-testing of SiLeach® produced battery-grade lithium carbonate from sub-spec spodumene and lithium micas.

Studies show that SiLeach® LSPP can be cash positive with additional cost reduction upside from further optimisation, scale up and by-product credits.

READ: Lithium Australia attracts speculative buy recommendation from Perth broker

Perth broker RM Research recently initiated coverage on Lithium Australia with a speculative buy recommendation.

RM Research considers the ability to produce advanced lithium ion cathode material moves Lithium Australia up the lithium value chain.

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Fri, 12 Jan 2018 14:40:00 +1100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/189925/lithium-australias-sileach-process-confirmed-as-novel-and-patentable-189925.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia's spin-out of graphite assets moves towards ASX listing ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/189328/lithium-australia-s-spin-out-of-graphite-assets-moves-towards-asx-listing-189328.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) has taken a major step towards the spin-out of its non-core graphite assets, which will form a new company named BlackEarth Minerals NL.

BlackEarth has received a conditional admission letter from the ASX for the listing of its securities.

The ASX has now advised that it has decided to admit BlackEarth to the official list of the ASX and to quote its securities, subject to the satisfaction of certain conditions precedent.

BlackEarth is currently working with the ASX to finalise all necessary documentation and completion of the required conditions.

The company plans to focus on exploring for graphite at its West Australian projects, and on further development of the Maniry and Ianapera projects in southern Madagascar.

Funds raised

BlackEarth has received $5.455 million from 658 applications for a total of 27,275,500 fully paid shares and 13,637,750 partly paid shares attached to the fully paid ordinary shares on a 1-for-2 basis.

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Fri, 29 Dec 2017 08:57:00 +1100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/189328/lithium-australia-s-spin-out-of-graphite-assets-moves-towards-asx-listing-189328.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia attracts speculative buy recommendation from Perth broker ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/189064/lithium-australia-attracts-speculative-buy-recommendation-from-perth-broker-189064.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) is trading in the $0.20 range and Perth broker RM Research has initiated coverage with a speculative buy recommendation.

RM Research considers the ability to produce advanced lithium ion cathode material moves Lithium Australia up the lithium value chain.

Adding interest, it says the company also provides the opportunity to integrate the various technologies required to participate in all sectors of the energy metal cycle. The following is an extract from the report.

Significant events expected to occur

RM Research says a number of significant events are expected to occur over the course of 2018 as Lithium Australia progresses key milestones.

These include the SiLeach® LSPP, the recommissioning of VSPC cathode facilities and establishing a commercial pathway for lithium-ion recycling.

Disrupting the lithium supply chain

Lithium Australia is an innovator and developer of disruptive-lithium extraction and production technologies.

The following is an extract from the report:

Maiden lithium resource for Sadisdorf project

Inferred Mineral Resource estimate of 25Mt @ 0.45% Li2O for Sadisdorf tin-lithium project in Saxony, Germany.

Capable of producing a high-grade lithium mica concentrate.

The resource has the potential to feed a 25,000tpa lithium carbonate plant for 10 years.

SiLeach® hydrometallurgical process suited to unlocking the lithium value from Sadisdorf and similar historical tin deposits.

Lithium Australia enters $3b cathode market through VSPC acquisition

Shareholders approved the acquisition of advanced cathode material producer, Very Small Particle Company (VSPC) at LIT’s AGM on 30 November 2017.

VSPC’s Lithium Iron Phosphate (LFP) cathode material tested by Independent laboratory in Germany outperforms reference standard.

Large-scale SiLeach® pilot plant on track for 2018

Further optimisation studies and test-work continue with LIT on track to approve the construction of a Large-scale SiLeach® pilot plant (LSPP) early in 2018 and has recently stated its intention to fund construction off its own balance sheet.

Pilot-testing of SiLeach® produced battery-grade lithium carbonate from sub-spec spodumene and lithium micas.

Studies show that SiLeach® LSPP can be cash positive with additional cost reduction upside from further optimisation, scale up and by-product credits.

Strategic alliances

LIT continues to build out its network of strategic exploration projects and alliances globally.

In the last quarter alone LIT has:

- Executed MOU for Lithium exploration-processing with ASX listed Poseidon Nickel.

- Expanded its North Queensland exploration footprint.

- Acquired a majority interest (54%) in its Mexican lithium clay project.

BlackEarth Minerals (BEM) prepares for IPO

LIT’s graphite focused subsidiary BlackEarth Minerals Ltd has raised more than $4.5m ahead of ASX listing. LIT to hold a minimum of BEM post listing valued at $2.2 million.

Recycling strategy

LIT has established subsidiary Resource Conservation and Recycling Corporation Pty Ltd (RCARC) and is currently undertaking advanced research programs to evaluation cradle-to-grave cycles of Lithium Ion Batteries.

$18 million+ cash at bank

As at 1/12/2017, LIT held $18m in cash reserves which has likely continued to increase substantially through LIT’s use of the Controlled Placement Agreement (CPA) with Acuity Capital.

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Thu, 21 Dec 2017 08:20:00 +1100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/189064/lithium-australia-attracts-speculative-buy-recommendation-from-perth-broker-189064.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia's drilling campaign targets resource upgrade ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/188688/lithium-australia-s-drilling-campaign-targets-resource-upgrade-188688.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) is undertaking a diamond drilling program at its Sadisdorf Lithium Project in Germany.

The two hole, 460-metre program is designed to validate historical drilling data and increase confidence in future mineral resource estimates.

Significantly, drilling may also lead to some of the resource being upgraded from the Inferred to Indicated category, and expansion of the mineral resource.

The drill program follows the recent release of a promising maiden resource at Sadisdorf.

READ: Lithium Australia to benefit from maiden lithium resource in electric vehicle manufacturer's backyard

The recent maiden resource has the potential to provide processing capacity for circa 25,000 tonnes per annum of lithium carbonate equivalent output for 10 years

Lithium Australia is farming into a joint venture at Sadisdorf in southeast Germany with German firm Tin International AG.

First drilling since 1990

Adrian Griffin, managing director, said: "This is the first drilling at the Sadisdorf project since 1990.

"The initial holes will not only duplicate historic drill holes but also target mineralised zones outside the current mineral resource estimate.

"This work will progress our goal of breathing new life into the Sadisdorf project and potentially supplying raw materials to the European battery industry.”

 

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Wed, 13 Dec 2017 10:07:00 +1100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/188688/lithium-australia-s-drilling-campaign-targets-resource-upgrade-188688.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia’s spin out BlackEarth Minerals approaches full subscription for IPO ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/188535/lithium-australias-spin-out-blackearth-minerals-approaches-full-subscription-for-ipo-188535.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) continues to successfully progress the spin-out of its non-core graphite assets into BlackEarth Minerals NL.

BlackEarth Minerals has now reached the minimum required subscription of $4.5 million worth of shares with the priority offer now closed.

READ: Lithium Australia gains strong shareholder support for BlackEarth Minerals spin-off

Notably, current indications are that the priority offer's full allocation will be issued.

Any excess applications will now be considered under the general offer, which remains open until 14 December 2017.

READ: Lithium Australia to benefit from maiden lithium resource in electric vehicle manufacturer's backyard

Most recently, Lithium Australia outlined a maiden resource estimate for the Sadisdorf Tin-Lithium Project in Germany.

The inferred estimate of 25 million tonnes at 0.45% lithium is a milestone for the lithium explorer and processing technology developer.

Lithium Australia is farming into a joint venture at Sadisdorf with German firm Tin International AG.

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Mon, 11 Dec 2017 07:40:00 +1100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/188535/lithium-australias-spin-out-blackearth-minerals-approaches-full-subscription-for-ipo-188535.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia to benefit from maiden lithium resource in electric vehicle manufacturer's backyard ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/188395/lithium-australia-to-benefit-from-maiden-lithium-resource-in-electric-vehicle-manufacturer-s-backyard-188395.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) is set to benefit from a maiden resource estimate for the Sadisdorf Tin-Lithium Project in Germany.

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.

READ: Lithium Australia enters product off-take negotiations

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.

READ: Lithium Australia NL to add battery cathode technology to disruptive portfolio

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.

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Thu, 07 Dec 2017 09:04:00 +1100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/188395/lithium-australia-to-benefit-from-maiden-lithium-resource-in-electric-vehicle-manufacturer-s-backyard-188395.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia gains strong shareholder support for BlackEarth Minerals spin-off ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/188312/lithium-australia-gains-strong-shareholder-support-for-blackearth-minerals-spin-off-188312.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) has had strong support from shareholders for the spin-off of its non-core graphite assets into BlackEarth Minerals NL.

The priority entitlement period for Lithium Australia shareholders for the BlackEarth Minerals IPO closes tomorrow.

By yesterday shareholders had applied for more than four million BlackEarth shares.

The priority entitlement limit is five million shares.

READ: Lithium Australia to extract value from IPO as shares hit 12-month highs

BlackEarth has lodged a prospectus to raise a minimum of $4.5 million and a maximum of $6 million in the IPO.

The offer closing date is 5pm (WST) on 14 December 2017 and the issue date of securities is 18 December 2017.

Expected date for quotation of BlackEarth shares is 22 December

The expected date for quotation of BlackEarth shares on the ASX is 22 December.

Adrian Griffin, managing director, said: "The BlackEarth offer gives Lithium Australia shareholders a priority entitlement to gain exposure to energy metals on the anode side of the battery: graphite is an important mineral for the continuing battery revolution.

"Lithium Australia will be a substantial shareholder in BlackEarth, further strengthening the company’s balance sheet."

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Wed, 06 Dec 2017 09:12:00 +1100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/188312/lithium-australia-gains-strong-shareholder-support-for-blackearth-minerals-spin-off-188312.html
<![CDATA[News - Lithium Australia extends opportunity to access IPO of BlackEarth Minerals ]]> https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/187338/lithium-australia-extends-opportunity-to-access-ipo-of-blackearth-minerals-187338.html Lithium Australia NL (ASX:LIT) is creating value from a non-core asset, by selling its graphite assets into the pending IPO of BlackEarth Minerals NL.

BlackEarth has lodged a prospectus to raise a minimum of $4.5 million and a maximum of $6 million.

The prospectus exposure period has been extended to the 22nd November 2017.

Allocation to Lithium Australia shareholders

There have been 5 million $0.20 shares allocated and made available to those Lithium Australia shareholders registered on the 14th November 2017, collectively on a priority application basis.

The offer includes for every two shares, a partly paid share will be allocated, paid to $0.0001, unpaid to $0.2499.

The minimum subscription is 10,000 shares valued at $2000.

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Thu, 16 Nov 2017 13:37:00 +1100 https://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/187338/lithium-australia-extends-opportunity-to-access-ipo-of-blackearth-minerals-187338.html