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Lithium Australia subsidiary VSPC boosts products mix with LTO battery anode powders, shares climb

Lithium Australia NL’s (ASX:LIT) fully-owned subsidiary ,VSPC Ltd, is getting into the lithium titanium oxide (LTO) game. The company announced … Read…

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Lithium Australia NL’s (ASX:LIT) fully-owned subsidiary ,VSPC Ltd, is getting into the lithium titanium oxide (LTO) game.

The company announced today that it has added commercial quality LTO anode powder to its product mix.

LTO anode power is an important material in the manufacturing of high performance lithium-ion batteries (LIB) cells.

In addition to lithium ferro phosphate (LFP) and lithium manganese ferro phosphate (LFMP) cathode powders — which VSPC’s plant is already producing — the company announced today that its manufacturing capability now includes LTO, with the performance of its LTO exceeding industry benchmarks.

When VSPC’s LTO was benchmarked against five commercial LTO products, the material achieved a specific capacity of 169 milliampere hours per gram at 0.1C, Lithium Australia said.

Overall, VSPC’s LTO achieved “superior specific quality” when compared with other commercially available materials, including Tech9 LTO and Hombitec LTO.

LIT shares jumped 8.7% on the news to 12.5 cents.

Specific capacities for the VSPC and commercial LTO. Pic: Supplied

Conventionally, LTO is prepared through a solid-state reaction, with titanium dioxide (rutile or anatase) and lithium carbonate or lithium hydroxide as the raw materials.

VSPC said these materials are calcined at temperatures above 800° Celsius for a prolonged period (between 12 to 24 hours) to ensure a high-phase purity and because its patented, slurry-based process reduces calcination time and ensures consistent phase and end-product quality, it is ideal for producing LTO.

Research underway into other anode battery materials

As well as creating new market opportunities, VSPC’s success with LTO has prompted the company to expand its research into other anode battery materials, including titanium niobium oxide and other niobium-based anode materials often used in space and defense applications.

VSPC is now developing an anode materials work program with other organisations that are leading research in this area.

Blackstone engages consultants to advance Ta Khoa refinery

Blackstone Minerals (ASX:BSX) has engaged engineering consultants Wood and leader in metallurgical testing ALS to carry out critical roles in the delivery of the definitive feasibility study (DFS) at the Ta Khoa Refinery in Vietnam.

Wood, recognised in the industry as a leading hydrometallurgical group, will be responsible for providing project management, project controls, engineering, cost estimating and execution planning services for the TKR plant design.

ALS on the other hand, will conduct a peer review on the TKR PFS process flow sheet, including bench scale confirmatory test work to confirm operating parameters ahead of piloting.

A pre-feasibility study for the development of the refinery project was released back in July, demonstrating that the plant could process up to 400ktpa (base case) of nickel concentrate to produce battery grade NCM811 precursor for the lithium-ion battery industry.

A final investment decision is earmarked for the project in 2022 following the DFS and pilot plant testing.

The post Lithium Australia subsidiary VSPC boosts products mix with LTO battery anode powders, shares climb appeared first on Stockhead.






Author: Jessica Cummins

Energy & Critical Metals

High Voltage: Non-DRC cobalt projects in demand as prices hit 3-year highs

Our High Voltage column wraps all the news driving ASX stocks with exposure to lithium, cobalt, graphite, nickel, rare earths, … Read More
The post High…

Our High Voltage column wraps all the news driving ASX stocks with exposure to lithium, cobalt, graphite, nickel, rare earths, and vanadium.

 

In November, cobalt metal prices in Europe rose by 10.4% to punch through the $US30/lb mark for the first time since late 2018.

This late year rally is underpinned by strong demand side fundamentals, limited metal production in China, logistical bottlenecks, and a bullish outlook for battery sector demand heading into 2022, says Benchmark Mineral Intelligence.

Benchmark expects prices to rise steadily into the New Year, “with some market contacts indicating that they expect prices to break the $35/lb level before year-end”.

“Indeed, Benchmark sources have indicated that cobalt metal demand from the battery industry in Europe and Japan is set to increase substantially in 2022,” it says.


 

Cobalt customers diversifying away from the DRC

The landlocked Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) is a global giant when it comes to cobalt production. According to the United States Geological Survey (USGS), the DRC produced 95,000 tonnes of cobalt in 2020, accounting for 68% of global output.

It’s where China – the world’s biggest consumer by far — gets ~90% of its supply.

But some high-profile supply agreements have shown that European consumers are committed to diversifying away from problematic Chinese and DRC supply chains, Benchmark says.

“To an extent, supply chain players have shown willingness to accept higher costs in order to ensure ESG targets are met, making products more appealing to global automakers,” it says.

That includes prospective Norwegian cell producer, FREYR, which signed a supply contract with Glencore for 1,500 tonnes of cobalt metal in the form of ‘cut cathode’, sourced from Glencore’s Nikkelverk refinery in Norway.

Nikkelverk uses concentrate from Canada and recycled material as feed.

“Generally, cobalt metal in the form of cut cathode has not been utilised by the battery industry for conversion into cobalt sulphate, due to extended dissolution times and therefore higher conversion costs than more conventional cobalt metal briquettes, broken cathode and hydroxide,” Benchmark says.

 

Where’s is the non-DRC cobalt coming from?

Cobalt supply is expected to be dominated by the DRC for the foreseeable future.

That underscores the importance of cobalt projects in ‘de risked’ tier 1 jurisdictions – like those owned by Jervois Mining (ASX:JRV), Australian Mines (ASX:AUZ)Sunrise Energy Metals (ASX:SRL) Queensland Pacific Metals (ASX:QPM)Cobalt Blue (ASX:COB), red hot IPO Kuniko (ASX:KNI) and Metals X’s (ASX:MLX) nickel-cobalt spin-out Nico Resources, which is gearing up to list in December or January.

NOW READ: Cobalt stocks guide: Here’s everything you need to know

 

Battery Metals Winners and Losers

Here’s how a basket of ASX stocks with exposure to lithium, cobalt, graphite, nickel, rare earths, and vanadium are performing>>>

Battery metals stocks missing from our list? Email [email protected]

CODE COMPANY 1 WEEK RETURN % 1 MONTH RETURN % 6 MONTH RETURN % 1 YEAR RETURN % SHARE PRICE MARKET CAP
ADD Adavale Resources -10 -31 -62 -25 0.038 $ 12,987,708.88
AML Aeon Metals -8 -23 -57 -68 0.0395 $ 33,618,703.60
ALY Alchemy Resource -8 -8 -30 -41 0.011 $ 10,475,793.79
ARN Aldoro Resources -11 -18 25 153 0.405 $ 36,010,003.55
ARN Aldoro Resources -11 -18 25 153 0.405 $ 36,010,003.55
AKE Allkem Limited -10 -13 23 115 8.54 $ 5,431,717,992.72
AJM Altura Mining 0 0 0 0 0.063161 $ 214,798,472.24
ARR American Rare Earths 3 -3 101 65 0.165 $ 57,661,907.16
ATM Aneka Tambang -5 -5 5 5 1.05 $ 1,368,831.45
ASN Anson Resources -19 -28 67 209 0.105 $ 102,139,928.00
ARU Arafura Resource -8 -18 16 76 0.185 $ 271,323,033.10
AXE Archer Materials -3 -29 61 117 1.16 $ 264,896,911.49
ARL Ardea Resources 8 12 16 22 0.52 $ 69,415,109.50
ADV Ardiden 0 -15 10 -45 0.011 $ 24,763,356.59
AGY Argosy Minerals 0 -20 168 277 0.26 $ 291,300,489.87
AZL Arizona Lithium -9 -30 203 727 0.091 $ 153,533,049.83
AAJ Aruma Resources -13 -22 6 -36 0.067 $ 8,187,497.70
AOU Auroch Minerals -15 -29 -42 -29 0.11 $ 38,871,786.47
AQD Ausquest Limited -6 0 -26 -6 0.017 $ 14,834,686.01
A8G Australasian Metals -11 -38 170 0.445 $ 17,626,722.30
AUZ Australian Mines -2 -18 14 31 0.0205 $ 86,071,182.28
AVL Australian Vanadium -4 23 35 80 0.027 $ 88,598,045.86
AR3 Austrare -11 23 0.92 $ 69,405,891.67
AVZ AVZ Minerals 3 21 300 588 0.64 $ 1,818,267,564.20
AZS Azure Minerals 0 -4 18 -59 0.335 $ 96,328,073.51
BMM Balkanminingandmin -16 -45 0.375 $ 11,462,500.00
BHP BHP Group 4 11 -18 -4 40.03 $ 116,800,452,688.46
BKT Black Rock Mining 10 -6 29 150 0.22 $ 160,116,424.41
BEM Blackearth Minerals -4 -4 0 150 0.115 $ 22,826,503.04
BSX Blackstone -6 -9 49 45 0.535 $ 199,514,439.33
BOA Boadicea Resources 5 8 -20 -14 0.2 $ 15,928,478.48
BRB Breaker Res NL -12 -28 61 66 0.29 $ 92,864,664.77
BUX Buxton Resources -1 -18 -34 22 0.079 $ 11,020,489.99
CAE Cannindah Resources -16 -64 203 538 0.185 $ 89,032,517.47
CWX Carawine Resources -3 -5 -21 -34 0.185 $ 25,861,303.37
CLA Celsius Resource -15 -15 -49 -50 0.022 $ 23,187,517.78
CTM Centaurus Metals 0 2 56 81 1.03 $ 343,729,052.00
CHN Chalice Mining -2 36 1 143 9.24 $ 3,219,609,409.18
CHR Charger Metals -1 -23 0.41 $ 12,972,569.18
COB Cobalt Blue -12 -18 -4 176 0.345 $ 106,088,145.69
CNJ Conico 0 -5 16 3 0.036 $ 37,007,950.34
CZN Corazon -6 -11 -13 -45 0.033 $ 9,834,831.06
CXO Core Lithium 1 -17 104 546 0.53 $ 792,701,302.80
DEV Devex Resources -9 97 36 131 0.6 $ 164,946,583.73
EGR Ecograf Limited -21 3 6 254 0.655 $ 292,716,748.35
ESS Essential Metals -8 -27 77 101 0.175 $ 38,646,395.84
ESR Estrella Res -19 -24 -61 -79 0.025 $ 29,426,093.50
EUR European Lithium -4 -41 72 134 0.11 $ 113,449,884.24
EMH European Metals -4 -7 -4 77 1.335 $ 171,721,393.80
FFX Firefinch 17 18 107 379 0.755 $ 744,489,789.30
FGR First Graphene 5 11 -11 -9 0.21 $ 115,525,407.06
FRS Forrestaniaresources -17 -43 0.27 $ 7,854,000.00
GLN Galan Lithium -6 -16 97 310 1.415 $ 407,127,267.81
GAL Galileo Mining -13 -7 -25 -13 0.21 $ 36,207,979.08
GL1 Globallith -5 -6 109 0.565 $ 59,267,194.57
GME GME Resources -12 -23 -11 2 0.053 $ 33,857,473.43
GED Golden Deeps 8 8 0 -7 0.013 $ 10,086,068.72
G88 Golden Mile Resources 2 0 -15 4 0.052 $ 8,892,953.06
GBR Great Boulder Resources 0 -13 35 182 0.135 $ 46,440,655.17
GSR Greenstone Resources -10 4 18 -13 0.026 $ 21,791,124.60
GW1 Greenwing Resources -9 -15 37 105 0.41 $ 45,743,644.65
HNR Hannans 0 -18 435 524 0.037 $ 91,219,501.66
HAS Hastings Tech Met -8 -8 38 62 0.235 $ 399,844,863.44
HXG Hexagon Energy -1 -25 -14 23 0.079 $ 33,005,023.20
HYM Hyperion Metals 0 -10 -13 239 0.865 $ 115,775,447.53
IGO IGO -3 9 29 97 9.91 $ 7,610,541,520.65
ILU Iluka Resources 3 -2 10 52 8.66 $ 3,724,180,609.60
IPT Impact Minerals -7 -7 -13 -38 0.013 $ 26,309,333.95
INF Infinity Lithium 0 -22 161 13 0.175 $ 62,113,418.40
INR Ioneer -4 -23 79 110 0.61 $ 1,179,065,329.43
IXR Ionic Rare Earths -7 5 46 116 0.041 $ 139,088,380.07
JRV Jervois Global -2 -2 -3 54 0.52 $ 789,259,048.24
JRL Jindalee Resources -12 -20 -26 160 2.13 $ 116,323,526.90
LKE Lake Resources -5 -25 204 925 0.82 $ 932,447,770.11
LEG Legend Mining -2 -17 -63 -50 0.05 $ 137,756,786.05
LPD Lepidico -8 -6 196 381 0.0385 $ 230,156,181.06
LML Lincoln Minerals 0 0 0 0 0.008 $ 4,599,869.49
LTR Liontown Resources -21 -24 165 519 1.455 $ 3,178,310,228.03
LEL Lithenergy -15 -31 76 0.74 $ 33,075,000.00
LIT Lithium Australia NL -6 -17 -6 88 0.1125 $ 112,757,141.53
LPI Lithium Pwr Int -3 -12 128 65 0.445 $ 149,971,034.64
LOT Lotus Resources -2 -6 45 243 0.305 $ 276,596,517.36
LYC Lynas Rare Earths 5 22 64 122 8.91 $ 8,302,186,296.80
MNS Magnis Energy Tech -12 -24 60 158 0.465 $ 425,642,809.24
MAN Mandrake Res -12 -21 -82 -57 0.045 $ 22,582,351.79
MLS Metals Australia 0 25 25 25 0.0025 $ 10,477,114.72
MLX Metals X 24 34 83 421 0.495 $ 449,096,703.17
MCR Mincor Resources -2 -10 17 17 1.2 $ 576,373,358.40
MRC Mineral Commodities -13 -29 -59 -74 0.1 $ 51,894,091.50
MIN Mineral Resources -1 18 -7 29 44.69 $ 8,307,520,781.89
MMC Mitremining -5 -5 0.2 $ 5,552,445.50
MOH Moho Resources -8 2 -20 -44 0.059 $ 7,420,748.72
MRD Mount Ridley Mines 14 14 14 167 0.008 $ 42,311,506.41
NMT Neometals -3 -5 102 369 1.025 $ 570,311,451.84
NWC New World Resources -8 -17 -35 21 0.068 $ 109,499,115.02
NIC Nickel Mines -4 31 24 34 1.33 $ 3,508,465,526.15
NKL Nickelx -5 -19 -30 0.105 $ 5,811,750.00
NTU Northern Min -15 0 61 51 0.053 $ 247,605,406.27
NVADB Nova Minerals 1 -7 -13 -28 1.26 $ 214,804,507.20
OZL OZ Minerals 3 10 4 41 26.4 $ 8,851,866,433.69
PAM Pan Asia Metals -11 -16 190 223 0.42 $ 30,936,630.48
PAN Panoramic Resources -5 0 27 50 0.21 $ 430,691,940.84
PEKDA Peak Resources 21 18 -38 13 0.8 $ 142,132,523.39
PNN PepinNini Minerals -11 -33 57 150 0.425 $ 20,016,966.45
PLL Piedmont Lithium -1 -12 -14 120 0.78 $ 419,473,336.00
PLS Pilbara Min -6 0 78 231 2.36 $ 6,991,222,392.20
PGM Platina Resources -20 -18 -35 9 0.051 $ 23,456,646.47
POS Poseidon Nickel 0 2 13 29 0.088 $ 266,564,478.76
PSC Prospect Resources -3 37 294 348 0.65 $ 261,399,356.35
PRL Province Resources -8 -5 -8 996 0.1425 $ 158,152,373.54
PUR Pursuit Minerals -18 -21 -67 35 0.027 $ 23,425,347.90
PVW PVW Resources 8 3 210 210 0.465 $ 30,479,625.00
QEM QEM 0 -3 0 128 0.18 $ 19,849,083.28
QPM Queensland Pacific -10 -16 28 363 0.185 $ 223,676,166.62
QXR Qx Resources -4 -24 38 47 0.022 $ 12,888,884.10
RFR Rafaella Resources -10 -26 -37 -23 0.06 $ 12,016,772.33
REE RareX -1 4 22 -18 0.099 $ 44,707,727.20
RMX Red Mount Min -15 -15 -23 -23 0.0085 $ 13,180,124.72
RLC Reedy Lagoon -25 -33 67 114 0.03 $ 16,200,784.98
RNU Renascor Resources 0 -15 34 900 0.11 $ 198,305,746.80
RBX Resource Base -2 5 488 488 0.2 $ 7,989,517.00
RXL Rox Resources 0 0 -24 -54 0.365 $ 59,102,855.25
S2R S2 Resources -19 3 10 -32 0.17 $ 60,583,725.35
SBR Sabre Resources 0 -17 0 -50 0.005 $ 8,446,568.25
SYA Sayona Mining -15 -23 95 1382 0.115 $ 775,621,717.75
SRI Sipa Resources -2 -11 -14 -29 0.049 $ 9,841,190.54
SGQ St George Mining 5 -6 -26 -49 0.061 $ 35,940,647.16
STK Strickland Metals -3 -22 113 34 0.068 $ 80,099,692.35
SLZ Sultan Resources 0 -11 -41 -32 0.16 $ 11,125,502.24
SRL Sunrise 0 -9 -15 -31 1.755 $ 166,607,076.15
SYR Syrah Resources -6 -12 3 9 1.105 $ 546,114,521.69
TLG Talga Group -24 -28 -12 -26 1.365 $ 418,968,713.63
TMT Technology Metals -6 -16 3 -14 0.31 $ 63,135,030.90
TNG TNG Limited -17 -44 -4 -25 0.067 $ 99,966,111.98
TKL Traka Resources -14 -20 -33 -48 0.012 $ 8,709,510.52
TON Triton Minerals -3 -3 18 -22 0.039 $ 45,378,722.68
VR8 Vanadium Resources -9 -18 19 152 0.063 $ 29,332,967.19
VMC Venus Metals 0 -3 -16 -20 0.175 $ 27,194,162.94
VIA Viagold Rare Earths 0 0 2339 10426 2 $ 166,624,808.00
VML Vital Metals Limited -7 -4 -10 44 0.052 $ 212,439,637.28
VRC Volt Resources -4 -4 -18 135 0.027 $ 69,583,206.03
VUL Vulcan Energy -6 -21 20 360 9.79 $ 1,137,856,640.55
WKT Walkabout Resources 0 -3 3 15 0.19 $ 74,989,655.48
KNI Kuniko 8 -34 42 42 1.21 $ 49,980,000.00

 

The post High Voltage: Non-DRC cobalt projects in demand as prices hit 3-year highs appeared first on Stockhead.









Author: Reuben Adams

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Energy & Critical Metals

Millennial Lithium Signs Definitive Agreement With Lithium Americas, but Don’t Count Out the Chinese Yet

 
Millennial Lithium (ML.V) has entered into a definitive agreement with Lithium Americas (LAC, LAC.TO) whereby the latter will acquire Lithium Americas…

Millennial Lithium (ML.V) has entered into a definitive agreement with Lithium Americas (LAC, LAC.TO) whereby the latter will acquire Lithium Americas for a total value of C$4.70 per share to be settled in new shares of LAC and a cash payment of C$0.001. The issue price of the new LAC shares hasn’t been set which makes this an attractive deal as the total ratio will actually depend on the share price of LAC when the deal closes so there’s no arbitration possibility while even a drop in LAC’s share price will not result in LAC paying less than C$4.70/share; it would simply have to issue more shares to make up for the lower share price.

It’s clear this indeed represents a superior proposal compared to the C$4.60 cash offer by CATL, but we can’t rule out another counter-offer yet. China needs lithium and additional sources of lithium, and its main issue is that there are several countries where a mining project owned by a Chinese company may be frowned upon. In Australia, for instance, there would for sure be pushback and an almost certain review by a government agency while it seems very unlikely a Chinese company would be allowed to purchase a majority stake in a US deposit.

This means the list of projects and countries where a Chinese majority ownership in a commodity project would be welcomed is small and large companies like CATL can easily afford to pay an additional $20M or $40M if it helps the company to secure its supply chain for the next few decades. It’s surprising CATL hasn’t matched the Lithium Americas offer, but the special meeting to vote on the deal has only been set for January 6th, so CATL still has some time if it wants to come back to the  table.


Disclosure: The author has no position in Millennial Lithium. Please read our disclaimer.

Author: CR Team

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Precious Metals

Filings Buzz in the Mining Industry: 72% Jump in Big Data Mentions in Q2 of 2021

Mentions of big data within the filings of companies in the mining industry rose 72% between the first and second quarter of 2021…

Mentions of big data within the filings of companies in the mining industry rose 72% between the first and second quarters of 2021.

In total, the frequency of sentences related to big data between July 2020 and June 2021 was 150% higher than in 2016 when GlobalData, from whom our data for this article is taken, first began to track the key issues referred to in company filings.

 

When companies in the mining industry publish annual and quarterly reports, ESG reports and other filings, GlobalData analyses the text and identifies individual sentences that relate to disruptive forces facing companies in the coming years. Big data is one of these topics – companies that excel and invest in these areas are thought to be better prepared for the future business landscape and better equipped to survive unforeseen challenges.

To assess whether big data is featuring more in the summaries and strategies of companies in the mining industry, two measures were calculated. Firstly, we looked at the percentage of companies which have mentioned big data at least once in filings during the past twelve months – this was 58% compared to 31% in 2016. Secondly, we calculated the percentage of total analysed sentences that referred to big data.

Of the 50 biggest employers in the mining industry, China Steel Corp was the company which referred to big data the most between July 2020 and June 2021. GlobalData identified 23 big data-related sentences in the Taiwan-based company’s filings – 0.4% of all sentences. Tata Steel Ltd mentioned big data the second most – the issue was also referred to in 0.4% of sentences in the company’s filings. Other top employers with high big data mentions included Caterpillar Inc, MMC Norilsk Nickel, and KGHM Polska Miedz SA.

Across all companies in the mining industry the filing published in the second quarter of 2021 which exhibited the greatest focus on big data came from Tata Steel Ltd. Of the document’s 5,755 sentences, 24 (0.4%) referred to big data.

This analysis provides an approximate indication of which companies are focusing on big data and how important the issue is considered within the mining industry, but it also has limitations and should be interpreted carefully. For example, a company mentioning big data more regularly is not necessarily proof that they are utilising new techniques or prioritising the issue, nor does it indicate whether the company’s ventures into big data have been successes or failures.

GlobalData also categorises big data mentions by a series of subthemes. Of these subthemes, the most commonly referred to topic in the second quarter of 2021 was ‘data analytics’, which made up 70% of all big data subtheme mentions by companies in the mining industry.

 

The post Filings buzz in the mining industry: 72% increase in big data mentions in Q2 of 2021 appeared first on Mining Technology | Mining News and Views Updated Daily.

Author: Andrew Hillman

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