AUSTRALIAN-based lithium producer Galaxy Resources has reported significant improvements in the quality of the lithium carbonate produced at its Jiangsu plant in China.
The Jiangsu plant produces 17,000 tonnes per annum of battery-grade lithium carbonate, which is used to manufacture lithium-ion batteries.
Galaxy reported that it had achieved consistent production of battery-grade lithium of all specifications, after measures were taken to reduced impurities across the Jiangsu plant’s product samples.
Large amounts of sodium and sulphate in lithium carbonate can cause oxidation and gassing in the final product and a reduction in the charging capacity of lithium-ion batteries.
The most recent round of lithium carbonate testing at Jiangsu showed that levels of sodium, one of the most damaging impurities, had dropped from 117 parts per million to 20ppm.
Galaxy managing director Iggy Tan said the results were a key step in the quality improvement of the company’s lithium carbonate production.
“These latest results justify our decision to have designed the Jiangsu plant to produce high quality lithium carbonate,” he said.
Galaxy also reported that improvements had been recorded in sulphate levels, which dropped by 30 per cent to about 530ppm.
Galaxy halted operations at its Mt Cattlin project near Ravensthorpe in WA – which supplies Jiangsu with spodumene feedstock – at the end of July, due to excess stock on hand at the Chinese plant.
The company spent $55 million developing the Jiangsu lithium carbonate processing facility, which was officially opened earlier this year.
Looking beyond China and Australia, Galaxy is advancing plans to develop the Sal de Vida lithium and potash brine project in Argentina.
It also owns the James Bay lithium pegmatite project in Quebec, Canada. Lithium compounds are used to manufacture ceramics, glass, electronics and the batteries used to
power e-bikes and hybrid and electric vehicles