Cornish Lithium says it has found “globally significant” lithium grades at the United Downs Deep Geothermal Power Project near Redruth.
The company says initial results from preliminary sampling indicate some of the world’s highest grades of lithium and best overall chemical qualities encountered in published records for geothermal waters anywhere in the world.
Geothermal waters which contain lithium are very different from other occurrences of lithium in brine given that the same water can be used to generate zero-carbon electrical power and heat. As such these waters are rapidly becoming recognised as the ultimate ethical source of lithium.
CEO and founder Jeremy Wrathall said: “This is an exciting step towards the realisation of low-carbon lithium extraction from geothermal waters in Cornwall, and compliments Cornish Lithium’s work to date on exploring for lithium contained within shallower geothermal waters in the county.
“The pilot lithium extraction plant, part funded by the UK Government, that we will develop with Geothermal Engineering Ltd at the United Downs Deep Geothermal Power Project will allow us to evaluate green Direct Lithium Extraction technologies which will bring us another step closer to commercial production of lithium in Cornwall.
“We now have increased confidence that these lithium-enriched geothermal waters can be found at depth across Cornwall and believe that there is significant potential to replicate combined lithium and geothermal extraction plants in different locations across the county where Cornish Lithium has mineral rights agreements in place”
The Company, in collaboration with Geothermal Engineering, the developer of the United Downs Geothermal Power Project, was recently awarded funding from the UK Government’s ‘Getting Building Fund’ to build a pilot lithium extraction plant at the United Downs site. The £4 million project will design, procure, and build a pilot plant to trial Direct Lithium Extraction technology to extract lithium from the geothermal waters which circulate naturally at depth in the granite rock that underlies Cornwall.