Under the binding letter of intent (LoI) with Altair, St-Georges will open up access to its lithium processing technology for use with lithium-in-clay deposits and the partners will jointly create a patentable process for electric vehicle battery recycling.
St-Georges said the companies will next sign a definitive agreement by February 5, 2021. St-Georges president and chief executive Vilhjalmur Thor Vilhjalmsson said the work is an opportunity to broaden the company's scope and allow for the fine-tuning of its existing Nevada operations that are already in place with Iconic Minerals.
"We believe that the lithium extraction and purification processes which St-Georges has developed have the potential to reshape the economics of the lithium mining sector, and we are incredibly excited to have partnered with them on this endeavor," Altair president Leonard Lovallo said.
"As the demand and marketplace for lithium continues to expand with the ever-increasing popularity of EV vehicles across the globe, the scope and applications of the technologies which we are partnering with St-Georges on will only increase."
St-Georges said it is ready to start optimising the purification process element of its overall technology for lithium and recuperation. It will be seeking to minimise chemical losses while optimising total process recovery along with byproduct value.
It will be validating multiple resources in the work, it added, and assure that the selectivity of lithium recovery works on different types of resources.
"Multiple initiatives will be run in parallel with the company's strategic partners and suppliers," Vilhjalmsson said.
"This effort should lead to a complete metallurgical simulation to size and price equipment. St-Georges is committed to utilising multiple laboratories in parallel in order to protect intellectual proprietary processes and to accelerate IP extension."
Contractors for the company have already prepared spodumene concentrate from a Quebec-based mineral resources group. The company will conduct initial leaching tests in a pilot plant environment.
St-Georges is also waiting for material from the Bonnie Claire project in Nevada, which is coming from partner Iconic Minerals. Once received, it will be run a complete pilot mining processing circuit.