The Kemerton processing plant will initially consist of three production trains, each producing 20,000t per annum of lithium hydroxide, with a potential expansion to five trains that will see production increase to 100,000tpa by around 2025.
The plant will be supplied with lithium concentrate produced at the nearby Greenbushes mine.
Metso's scope of supply includes calciner and acid roaster systems, ball mills, off-gas handling systems and other auxiliaries. Metso said its proven pyro-processing technology will deliver high lithium recovery with low fuel consumption.
Ross Wotherspoon, Metso's senior vice president, Australian market area, said the company is pleased to be playing an important role in the project, as Albemarle "races to supply booming world demand for battery-quality lithium chemicals".
"Critical to the success of this project is the combined knowledge and experience of our people and Australian-based suppliers and subcontractors who are engaged to deliver major components of this important contract," he added.
"Lithium projects are on the increase, and at Metso we have diversified our solutions and services to meet this growing demand. We are the technology leader in minerals processing with a strong and capable support organisation close to our customers," said Victor Tapia, Metso's president for the Mining Equipment business.
The construction of the Kemerton greenfield project started in January 2019 and production is scheduled to commence in 2021. Equipment deliveries from Metso are expected to begin in the second half of 2019.