Company initiates detailed engineering for pilot plant & opens PEA bids for large scale plant
VANCOUVER, British Columbia, July 19, 2022 — Alpha Lithium Corporation (TSX.V: ALLI) (OTC: APHLF) (Germany WKN: A3CUW1) (“Alpha” or the “Company”) is very pleased to announce that it has engaged an experienced, specialist firm to undertake detailed engineering for a lithium pilot plant to be located in one of the Company’s primary asset locations, the Tolillar Salar in Argentina’s Lithium Triangle. Additionally, the Company has undertaken a bidding process to produce a Preliminary Economic Assessment (“PEA”) on a scalable, commercial production facility capable of producing up to 40,000 tonnes per year of high-purity lithium carbonate.
The Company currently has $44 million in cash; and accordingly, is well-funded to continue working towards its lithium carbonate production ambitions in Argentina.
Imec Ingeneria 360° (“Imec Engineering” or “Imec”), whom the Company had previously engaged to provide basic engineering services, is now engaged to provide detailed engineering services for the pilot plant. This is a natural progression of services, especially considering Alpha’s successful production of high-purity lithium carbonate and lithium hydroxide (see news release dated June 29, 2021). Imec’s mandate was expanded to include the detailed design of a fully operational pilot plant, which is intended to provide important data and information to inform the design of a full scale 40,000 tonne-per-year lithium chemicals production facility.
Alpha’s pilot plant will be constructed and tested in Salta’s industrial park, utilizing a skid-mounted, modular, and mobile design. Constructing in Salta in ideal factory conditions, versus on-site construction, provides the Company with significant cost savings, reliability of materials and construction crews, and availability of our technical experts to stress-test the entire process using Company-specific brine from both Tolillar and Hombre Muerto Salars. Once fully calibrated, the equipment, lab facilities and additional offices will be relocated to Tolillar Salar, where the current camp is being upgraded to accommodate a 400-person operation.
Brad Nichol, President, and CEO of Alpha, stated, “Construction of a lithium carbonate pilot plant is an important step towards large-scale commercial production, where we have targeted a first module of at least 20,000 tonnes per year with the intention to expand well beyond that initial phase. We are initiating discussions with the world’s most renowned engineering firms, capable of providing the significant engineering services for the design of such a large lithium chemicals production facility. A combination of the right people, processes, technology, and assets have brought Alpha to this important point in its development. With our maiden Resource Estimate expected shortly, Alpha Lithium is ready for the next level of advancement, with the objective of actively providing solutions for the global lithium supply shortage.”
Alpha’s proprietary Direct Lithium Extraction (“DLE”) process was developed in-house by the principals of Beyond Lithium LLC (“Beyond Lithium”) and concentrated lithium to 9,474 mg/L, after starting with a 200 mg/L brine sample (see news release dated June 2, 2021). DLE processes comprise the first stage of the lithium refining flow sheet. Alpha’s DLE process, in addition to several other potential DLE processes, will be incorporated into the detailed engineering work currently being undertaken by Imec and is expected to be utilized by the engineering firm chosen to provide the PEA on a 40,000 tonne per year commercial plant.
The Company is also very pleased to announce the engagement of Mario Portillo, a lithium expert and project manager with more than 40 years of experience. He has been hired to oversee the design, engineering, and construction process of the pilot plant. Mr. Portillo is world-renowned for his experience and rare expertise in the lithium processing and engineering fields. He previously held a leadership position at Techint, one of the oldest engineering and construction companies in Argentina, which designed and constructed Livent Corporation’s 25-year producing lithium carbonate and lithium chloride plants. He has previously worked for, amongst many others, Lithium Americas in the nearby Cauchari-Olaroz Salar and Galaxy Resources (now Allkem Limited) on the adjacent Sal de Vida project in the Hombre Muerto Salar.
ON BEHALF OF THE BOARD OF ALPHA LITHIUM CORPORATION
President, CEO and Director
About Alpha Lithium (TSX.V: ALLI) (OTC: APHLF) (Germany WKN: A3CUW1)
Alpha Lithium is a team of industry professionals and experienced stakeholders focused on the development of the Tolillar and Hombre Muerto Salars. In Tolillar, we have assembled 100% ownership of what may be one of Argentina’s last undeveloped lithium salars, encompassing 27,500 hectares (67,954 acres), neighboring multi-billion-dollar lithium players in the heart of the renowned “Lithium Triangle”. In Hombre Muerto, we continue to expand our 5,000+ hectare (12,570 acres) foothold in one of the world’s highest quality, longest producing, lithium salars. Other companies in the area exploring for lithium brines or currently in production include Orocobre Limited, Galaxy Lithium, Livent Corporation, and POSCO in Salar del Hombre Muerto; Orocobre in Salar Olaroz; Eramine SudAmerica S.A. in Salar de Centenario; and Gangfeng and Lithium Americas in Salar de Cauchari.
This news release contains forward-looking statements and other statements that are not historical facts. Forward-looking statements are often identified by terms such as “will”, “may”, “should”, “anticipate”, “expects” and similar expressions. All statements other than statements of historical fact, included in this news release are forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties. There can be no assurance that such statements will prove to be accurate and actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from the Company’s expectations include the results of further brine process testing and exploration and other risks detailed from time to time in the filings made by the Company with securities regulators. The reader is cautioned that assumptions used in the preparation of any forward-looking information may prove to be incorrect. Events or circumstances may cause actual results to differ materially from those predicted, as a result of numerous known and unknown risks, uncertainties, and other factors, many of which are beyond the control of the Company. The reader is cautioned not to place undue reliance on any forward-looking information. Such information, although considered reasonable by management at the time of preparation, may prove to be incorrect and actual results may differ materially from those anticipated. Forward-looking statements contained in this news release are expressly qualified by this cautionary statement. The forward-looking statements contained in this news release are made as of the date of this news release and the Company will update or revise publicly any of the included forward-looking statements as expressly required by applicable law.
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