Plans to Become Major Lithium Supplier

Plans to Become Major Lithium Supplier

Author: ChemistryViews

ExxonMobil is entering the lithium extraction market by using its expertise in geoscience, engineering, and chemical processing. The company will use a technology known as direct lithium extraction (DLE), which it says has a lower carbon footprint than traditional hard-rock mining. DLE works much like shale did for oil. Lithium-rich brine is extracted from rock formations deep underground. Lithium is quickly and efficiently extracted from the brine above ground, and the remaining brine is pumped back underground to the same reservoirs from which it came.

ExxonMobil’s first project is planned for Arkansas, USA, where lithium-rich saltwater brine is located deep underground an oil field. By 2030, the company plans to produce enough lithium to power about 1 million electric vehicles a year. Today, most of the world’s lithium is produced in Western Australia, South America, and China.


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