Cornish Lithium, mining consultancy Wardell Armstrong and the Natural History Museum comprise the project consortium, known as Li4UK,
Ben Simpson, technical director at Wardell Armstrong, said the development was "a huge stepping-stone for the electric vehicle and battery manufacturing industries in the UK".
High purity lithium is a vital component of lithium-ion batteries that power EVs and regarded as a critical mineral needed for the transition to a low carbon future.
Chief executive of Cornish Lithium, Jeremy Wrathall, said it was possible that the UK "could produce a significant percentage of its lithium demand domestically, thus creating a vertically-integrated supply chain".
Europe currently lacks any lithium production, which is currently confined to Australia, South America and China.