• 3 minutes Will Iron-Air batteries REALLY change things?
  • 7 minutes Natural gas mobility for heavy duty trucks
  • 11 minutes NordStream2
  • 3 hours GREEN NEW DEAL = BLIZZARD OF LIES
  • 5 hours U.S. Presidential Elections Status - Electoral Votes
  • 2 days Evergrande is going Belly Up.
  • 2 days World’s Biggest Battery In California Overheats, Shuts Down
  • 4 hours Is China Rising or Falling? Has it Enraged the World and Lost its Way? How is their Economy Doing?
  • 13 hours Monday 9/13 - "High Natural Gas Prices Today Will Send U.S. Production Soaring Next Year" by Irina Slav
  • 1 day Poland Expands LNG Powered Trucking and Fueling Stations
  • 12 hours The unexpected loss of output from wind turbines compels UK to turn to an alternative; It's not what you think!
  • 3 days And now, hybrid electric locomotives...
  • 3 days The Painful Death of Coal
  • 3 days Ozone layer destruction driving global warming
  • 3 days 'Get A Loan,' Commerce Chief Tells Unpaid Federal Workers
  • 2 days Is the Republican Party going to perpetuate lies about the 2020 election and attempt to whitewash what happened on January 6th?

Scientists Find Cheap And Easy Way To Extract Lithium From Seawater

Researchers at King Abdullah University of Science and Technology developed what they believe is an economically viable system to extract high-purity lithium from seawater.

Previous efforts to tease lithium from the mixture the metal makes together with sodium, magnesium and potassium in seawater yielded very little. Although the liquid contains 5,000 times more lithium than what can be found on land, it is present at extremely low concentrations of about 0.2 parts per million (ppm).

To address this issue, the team led by Zhiping Lai tried a method that had never been used before to extract lithium ions. They employed an electrochemical cell containing a ceramic membrane made from lithium lanthanum titanium oxide (LLTO). 

In a paper published in the journal Energy & Environmental Science, the researchers explain that the membrane’s crystal structure contains holes just wide enough to let lithium ions pass through while blocking larger metal ions. 

Related: WTI Price Breaks $70 For First Time Since 2018

The cell itself, on the other hand, contains three compartments. Seawater flows into a central feed chamber, where positive lithium ions pass through the LLTO membrane into a side compartment that contains a buffer solution and a copper cathode coated with platinum and ruthenium. At the same time, negative ions exit the feed chamber through a standard anion exchange membrane, passing into a third compartment containing a sodium chloride solution and a platinum-ruthenium anode.

Lai and his group tested the system using seawater from the Red Sea. At a voltage of 3.25V, the cell generates hydrogen gas at the cathode and chlorine gas at the anode. This drives the transport of lithium through the LLTO membrane, where it accumulates in the side-chamber. This lithium-enriched water then becomes the feedstock for four more cycles of processing, eventually reaching a concentration of more than 9,000 ppm. 

To make the final product pure enough so that it meets battery manufacturers’ requirements, the scientists then adjusted the pH of the solution to deliver solid lithium phosphate that contains mere traces of other metal ions.

According to the researchers, the cell will probably need $5 of electricity to extract 1 kilogram of lithium from seawater. This means that the value of hydrogen and chlorine produced by the cell would end up offsetting the cost of power, and residual seawater could also be used in desalination plants to provide fresh water.

Bty Mining.com

More Top Reads From Oilprice.com:



Join the discussion | Back to homepage



Leave a comment
  • Tom Thumb on June 08 2021 said:
    Great news with all this Global warming and the melting polar Ice their will be plenty of water in the Ocean
  • Philip Branton on June 07 2021 said:
    The article needs to be more revealing about the implications surrounding hydrogen and various nano membrane hybrid "results".

Leave a comment

EXXON Mobil -0.35
Open57.81 Trading Vol.6.96M Previous Vol.241.7B
BUY 57.15
Sell 57.00
Oilprice - The No. 1 Source for Oil & Energy News