Medaro Provides Update on Hard Rock Lithium Extraction Process

Medaro Mining Corp. (“Medaro” or the “Company”), a multi-faceted mineral explorer and joint venture (JV) partner with Global Lithium Extraction Technologies Inc., is pleased to provide an update regarding the venture’s innovative clean technology aimed at cost-effectively extracting lithium from spodumene.

The JV’s technology, as previously announced, is a thermochemical solvent extraction technique designed to rapidly manufacture lithium carbonate (Li2CO3) and/or lithium hydroxide (LiOH) from a variety of spodumene (LiAlSi2O6-rich) concentrates. The method is modular and highly scalable, thereby enabling a small “factory footprint” and holds the potential to significantly decrease overall hard-rock lithium production costs. The technology’s principal features are:

  • only three feedstock materials are required: (i) a spodumene concentrate, to produce high-purity Li2CO3 and/or high-purity LiOH; (ii) high-purity CO2, which is consumed in forming Li2CO3; and (iii) high-purity H2O, which is consumed in forming LiOH;
  • it creates three potentially saleable high-purity products: (i) Li2CO3 and/or LiOH; (ii) aluminum hydroxide, Al(OH)3; and (iii) amorphous silica, SiO2;
  • it eliminates use of conventional sulfuric acid leaching; and
  • its modular capabilities allow for scalable and remote deployment.

To date, the Company has completed the build-out of its laboratory facility in Kingston, Tennessee and immediately set out to confirm key aspects of the process viability. The team has successfully performed multiple tests at a low processing temperature which validated a critical cost saving capability through lower energy usage. Importantly, multiple tests indicated consistent 90% recovery of lithium and 30% of aluminum utilizing separate samples. Analysis of these results were tested and confirmed by Galbraith Labs a respected global laboratory with seventy years of experience headquartered in Knoxville, Tennessee. Efforts are now underway to develop final stage processing steps to separate the remaining lithium and aluminum out of the spodumene.

Dr. James G. Blencoe, Ph.D., CTO and lead proponent of the JV technology notes, “The results of our laboratory tests indicate that Li and Al extraction levels close to 100% are both technically and economically feasible. The proven low energy usage, along with the system’s closed-loop chemical recycling of the solvent, combine to greatly lower the overall cost of processing a spodumene concentrate. Optionally, all system operations can be powered entirely by green electricity and the process produces only a trivial amount of environmentally benign solid waste material. At this time, we are projecting that it’s highly likely the technology will lower spodumene processing costs by 30 to 50% or more, which would make the economics of Li recovery from spodumene concentrates much more competitive compared to Li recovery from brines. Plus, most of the chemical steps in our spodumene processing technology seem to be adaptable to extraction of Li from claystones offering broad commercial applicability across the industry.

Company President, Faizaan Lalani, advises, “This update offers great news for the lithium hard rock miners who have struggled to compete with the lithium brine producers. We aim to level the playing field and open the sector to new, cost-effective, and environmentally cleaner sources of this hugely important 21st century resource. While there is still a lot of work ahead in fully developing the process at scale, we appear to be on-track towards helping advance an entire mining sector towards new heights of profitability. We firmly believe today’s news offers great promise for our partners, stakeholders, future clients, and shareholders alike.”

Additionally, the Company has granted an aggregate of 2,320,000 restricted share units (“RSUs”) pursuant to its Equity Incentive Plan (the “Plan”) to certain directors, officers, and consultants of the Company. 986,667 of the RSUs will vest four (4) months from the date of grant, 666,667 of the RSUs will vest eight (8) months from the date of grant and 666,666 of the RSUs will vest twelve (12) months from the date of grant. All of the RSUs (and any common shares issuable upon redemption) will be subject to applicable securities law hold periods.

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