Stria Lithium (CVE:SRA) said it is progressing with the development of its lithium ore processing technologies, with its pilot plant now at the design stage, having hired a third-party engineering firm to audit its proprietary process.
The plant will be designed to produce up to 140 kg per month of lithium compound over a six-month period, beginning in the first half of this year, with the aim of providing potential customers with sufficient 99.99% purity materials to validate process economics and product quality.
Stria's pilot plant will be based on its proprietary process to get lithium chloride from hard rock ore that it says is more efficient and environmentally sustainable. Its lithium process uses fewer chemicals and controls as well as reduced energy, meaning it will cost less money to recover lithium.
The eventual aim is to come to market with an affordable lithium metal product, of higher quality directly from spodumene lithium ore.
In October, Stria completed bench scale metallurgical tests that confirmed the spodumene from its Pontax lithium project in Quebec is viable to use as feedstock for its pilot plant operations, which will be located in Kingston, Ontario at the Grafoid Global Technology Centre.
The company's technologies come at the perfect time, as battery manufacturers are looking to the resource sector to find new ways to lower production costs.
Lithium is used, in greater quantities, in batteries for electric vehicles, with an anticipated uptick in demand for plug-in hybrid electric and all-electric cars expected to increase the call for lithium significantly.
Stria's goal is to license its technologies to electric vehicle and large-scale industrial energy storage battery makers. It is seeking to signficantly cut down the amount of time for processing lithium all while sustaining the environment, with almost no waste coming out of Stria's proposed closed loop process.
The company said its business advantage, compared to other lithium juniors, is its strategic clean energy alliance with Focus Graphite and Grafoid to build a battery materials development business platform.
Stria also announced late Monday that it has extended its private placement offering until February 2nd. The company said in October that it closed the first tranche of the non-brokered financing of up to $1.0 million.