Lithium Australia is in the final stages of engineering design work for a large-scale pilot plant to process tailings from the old Lepidolite Hill mine near Coolgardie.
The project plans to recycle tailings via its SiLeach large scale pilot plant.
Lithium Australia has an 80% stake in the old mine as part of the Coolgardie Rare Metals Venture with Focus Minerals.
Previously sub-economic deposits at Lepidolite Hill now have the potential to be economically viable due to chemical recovery methods which are greatly less energy intensive than conventional methods.
Lithium Australia Managing Director, Adrian Griffin, 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.
“As demand for lithium grows, efficient resource utilisation will become essential. Our range of technologies allows us to seize opportunities as they arise, and that includes more than merely accessing mine waste – we’re also developing the ability to rebirth used lithium-ion batteries. It’s all part of Lithium Australia’s plan to take greater responsibility for the stewardship of our finite resources.”