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HOUSTON – Schlumberger New Energy and Panasonic Energy of North America, a division of Panasonic Corporation of North America, have entered into a collaboration agreement to validate and optimize the innovative and sustainable lithium extraction and production process that will be used by Schlumberger New Energy at its Neolith Energy pilot plant in Nevada. This collaboration paves the way for improved lithium production solutions that will help meet the expected increase in lithium demand as the electric vehicle market takes off worldwide.
Neolith Energy’s sustainable approach uses a differentiated direct lithium extraction process to produce high-purity, battery-grade lithium while reducing production time from over a year to weeks. The unique process stands in stark contrast to conventional evaporative lithium extraction methods, with a significantly reduced water and physical footprint. Panasonic will provide advice to validate and optimize the lithium material for battery quality consumption. Located in Clayton Valley, Nevada, the pilot plant is just 200 miles from Panasonic’s large-scale advanced battery manufacturing facility, Panasonic Energy of North America, in Sparks, Nevada.
As a global technology company and leader in lithium-ion batteries, Panasonic has a proven track record of innovation and advanced products and solutions that power the automotive industry. The demand for battery-grade lithium is expected to grow exponentially over the next decade. As electric vehicles rely heavily on rechargeable lithium-ion batteries, sustainable and efficient lithium production has become an important topic for regions, industries and technology companies, as well as battery manufacturers and major automakers. While the lithium industry is expected to attract significant investment, lead time to first lithium production for new development projects and new regions will be critical for the industry to meet the increased demand.
“Panasonic has a long-standing commitment to contributing to society and increasing supply chain sustainability as we strive to produce the safest, highest quality and most affordable batteries in the world is a key priority,” said Allan Swan, president of Panasonic Energy of North America. “We look forward to working with Schlumberger New Energy to help us achieve our vision of advancing the lithium-ion battery space and accelerating toward a clean energy society.”
“Panasonic is a pioneer in electric vehicle battery technology, and we are excited to collaborate with them to develop our differentiated process for direct lithium extraction and production,” said Ashok Belani, executive vice president of Schlumberger New Energy. “We are committed to expanding the global supply chain for advanced lithium compounds to support the projected increase in demand and create new opportunities for lithium production globally.
Neolith Energy’s goal will be to pump brine from underground, extract over 90% of dissolved lithium, and pump over 85% of brine underground in an environmentally friendly manner. . In addition to maximizing brine re-injection, the ultimate goal is to eliminate the need for any fresh water from an external source and reduce environmental impact.
Together, Panasonic and Schlumberger New Energy aim to accelerate the development and implementation of an innovative lithium production process, with a commitment to economic, environmental and responsible extraction to enable the global transition to new energy sources. .