An international research team has pioneered and patented a new filtration technique that could one day slash lithium extraction times.
The world-first study, published today in the prestigious international journal Nature Materials, presents findings that demonstrate the way in which Metal-Organic Framework (MOF) channels can mimic the filtering function, or ‘ion selectivity’, of biological ion channels embedded within a cell membrane.
Inspired by the precise filtering capabilities of a living cell, the research team has developed a synthetic MOF-based ion channel membrane that is precisely tuned, in both size and chemistry, to filter lithium ions in an ultra-fast, one-directional and highly selective manner.
This discovery, developed by researchers at Monash University, CSIRO, the University of Melbourne and The University of Texas at Austin, opens up the possibility to create a revolutionary filtering technology that could substantially change the way in which lithium-from-brine extraction is undertaken.
This technology is the subject of a worldwide patent application filed in 2019. Energy Exploration Technologies, Inc. (EnergyX) has since executed a worldwide exclusive license to commercialise the technology.
“Based on this new research, we could one day have the capability to produce simple filters that will take hours to extract lithium from brine, rather than several months to years,” said Professor Huanting Wang, co-lead research author and Professor of Chemical Engineering at Monash University.
“Preliminary studies have shown that this technology has a lithium recovery rate of approximately 90 percent – a substantial improvement on 30 percent recovery rate achieved through the current solar evaporation process.”
Professor Benny Freeman from the McKetta Department of Chemical Engineering at The University of Texas at Austin, said: “Thanks to the international, interdisciplinary and collaborative team involved in this research, we are discovering new routes to very selective separation membranes.”
“We are both enthusiastic and hopeful that the strategy outlined in this paper will provide a clear roadmap for resource recovery and low energy water purification of many different molecular species.”
Associate Professor (Jefferson) Zhe Liu from The University of Melbourne said: “The working mechanism of the new MOF-based filtration membrane is particularly interesting, and is a delicate competition between ion partial dehydration and ion affinitive interaction with the functional groups distributed along the MOF nanochannels.
“There is significant potential of designing our MOF-based membrane systems for different types of filtration applications, including for use in lithium-from-brine extraction.”
CSIRO and Monash University Associate Professor Matthew Hill said: “We’re pleased that our international research collaboration has made a breakthrough that could improve the supply of lithium. This is important for enabling electric vehicles and grid integration of renewable energy sources.”
“It’s truly an honour to work with such brilliant scientists at all these organisations,” said Teague Egan, Founder and CEO of EnergyX. “This breakthrough invention will literally change the way lithium is produced and how we power our future.”
The Latest Updates from Bing News & Google News
Go deeper with Bing News on:
- How Alberta’s lithium-laced oil fields can fuel the electric vehicle revolutionon July 10, 2020 at 12:31 pm
There’s a growing consensus that we need to build back better from COVID-19. Instead of shoring up the old economy as we did following the 2008 financial crisis, we need to make strategic investments ...
- Lithium Pilot-Plant Service Agreement Executedon July 10, 2020 at 11:22 am
(CSE:SX)(CNSX:SX.CN) (OTC:SXOOF) (FSE:85G1) is pleased to announce that it has executed a pilot-plant service agreement with a Quebec-based, publicly funded laboratory. The agreement allows the ...
- 10 Lithium Stocks to Buy Despite the Market’s Irrationalityon July 9, 2020 at 5:45 am
Further, American Battery Metals is planning on developing a superior lithium extraction process. If successful, the new technology could bolster our supply chains through faster deliveries.
- VUL secures EU-backed investment in Vulcan Zero Carbon Lithium™ Projecton July 7, 2020 at 5:35 pm
Vulcan Energy Resources (ASX:VUL) today revealed it has signed an investment agreement with European Union-backed EIT InnoEnergy for staged cash investments into Vulcan.
- New process enables lithium mining in Germanyon July 7, 2020 at 7:03 am
Lithium can be continuously extracted within hours in the thermal water cycle of the geothermal plant, whereas in the South American salt lakes, the enrichment process takes several months and is ...
Go deeper with Google Headlines on:
Go deeper with Bing News on:
- Researchers develop new cathode coating that extends lithium-ion battery life and boosts safetyon July 10, 2020 at 10:53 am
As the Argonne National Laboratory highlights, lithium batteries have utilized cathode coatings for more than 15 years albeit in a limited capacity. Existing implementations only blanket a small part ...
- American Lithium buys back royalty on TLC project, stock soarson July 10, 2020 at 10:23 am
American Lithium (TSXV: LI) announced Friday it will buy back 1.5% of the existing gross overriding royalty pertaining to its wholly owned TLC lithium claystone property from Nevada Alaska Mining, an ...
- American Lithium buyback&acquire updateon July 10, 2020 at 9:19 am
American Lithium (OTCQB:LIACF +15.7%) reached an agreement with Nevada Alaska Mining under which it will buyback 1.5% of the existing gross overriding royalty pertaining to its wholly owned TLC ...
- American Lithium to Reduce Royalty Obligations for TLC Project and Expand Holdings in Esmeralda Lithium District in Nevadaon July 10, 2020 at 6:42 am
American Lithium Corp. (TSXV: LI) (OTCQB: LIACF) (Frankfurt: 5LA1) (“ American Lithium ” or the “ Company ”) a leading lithium exploration and development company is pleased to announce that it has ...
- Scientists develop a new cathode coating to extend lithium-ion battery lifeon July 10, 2020 at 6:21 am
Researchers at the U.S. Department of Energies Argonne National Laboratory have been working with Hong Kong University of Science and Technology to develop a new particle-level cathode coating for ...