Canadian junior Frontier Lithium (TSX-V: FL) has kicked off the first phase of development at its PAK lithium asset, aimed at confirming the project’s economic viability through the construction and operation of a Demonstration Concentrator Plant that will produce multiple products for the industrial and battery markets.
The plant is expected to produce up to 15,000 tonnes of lithium concentrate (spodumene) per year from samples taken at the PAK deposit, located in what the company calls “Electric Avenue” — a “newly emerging, premium lithium-metal district,” hosted in the Canadian Shield of northwestern Ontario.
The samples from PAK, which contain up to 4.5% lithium oxide (Li2O), will be processed via gravity, heavy media, flotation and magnetic processes with a range of spodumene concentrates from 6.0 to 7.2% Li2O.
Construction of the plant will begin in the next 12-20 months, providing related permits and financing are confirmed, Frontier Lithium said.
Frontier Lithium’s future Phase II Commercial Production objective is to supply 3% of the world’s lithium demand from Ontario’s Electric Avenue by 2025,” President and CEO Trevor Walker said in a statement. “Our deposit is located on the other side of the globe from the world-class operating Greenbushes’ deposit in Western Australia, which has dominated global hard rock supply for years. The demonstration plant will enable us to reach out to customers and offer a high quality, reliable, long term and cost effective North American alternative.”
The junior recently found a lithium-cesium-tantalum pegmatite showing called Spark, which at surface shows a channel cut with similar grade and composition to PAK. The surface exposure of the discovery is three times larger than the Pak pegmatite, with widths greater than 100 metres and a strike length exceeding 300 metres.
By developing PAK, Frontier Lithium hopes to become a low-cost, fully integrated producer of the metal, used in the making of batteries that power electric cars and high-tech electronics.