We are thrilled to announce that we have commenced the ULiBS project, funded by the strategic innovation program Swedish Mining Innovation— a joint venture by Vinnova, Formas and the Swedish Energy Agency (grant no. 2022-03373) in collaboration with Uppsala University and Bergby Lithium AB, a subsidiary of United Lithium Corp (CSE: ULTH). This three-year project, which started in 2Q23, aims to revolutionize the exploration and extraction of lithium, and holds potential for our company and the lithium mining industry as a whole.
Under the ULiBS project, Orexplore will receive funding from Vinnova to further develop our lithium core scanning technologies from its R&D laboratory in Sweden. We will utilize our state-of-the-art GeoCore X10 drill core scanner, equipped with XCT, LIBS, and XRF scanning capabilities, to quantify the proportions of gangue minerals, petalite-spodumene, and quartz-feldspar in an LTC-type granitic pegmatite environment.
What do we hope to achieve from the project?
The primary objective of the ULiBS project is to meet the increasing demand for lithium while optimizing yields and minimizing waste. We aim to achieve this by developing and applying new methods that enhance ore characterization, identify critical metals, and evaluate the potential for economic by-products. By leveraging non-destructive scanning technologies, we seek to improve the efficiency and accuracy of exploration processes.
Our collaboration with Uppsala University and Bergby Lithium AB, along with the support from the strategic innovation program Swedish Mining Innovation, will enable us to:
- Delve deeper into the geological conditions for lithium bearing pegmatite systems formation
- Understand the structural evolution of lithium-bearing rocks
- Optimize processing methods.
These insights will not only reduce environmental impact but also promote the local sourcing of lithium for battery production.
The ULiBS project introduces a game-changing innovation by integrating LIBS technology into drill core scanning. This technology allows us to detect lithium, which is not measurable by conventional XRF systems. By combining CT and LIBS technology, along with standard XRF measurements, our scanning capabilities will provide detailed localized mineral differentiation and full surface coverage. This integration aims to significantly enhance exploration processes and contribute to low-waste or near non-waste operations in granitic pegmatite mining.
Moreover, the project aims to advance our knowledge of pegmatite fields’ geological settings, their relationship to metamorphic and tectonic events, and the characteristics of associated granites. This understanding will help identify potential occurrences of valuable minerals and contribute to alternative sourcing for conflict metals.
Increasing market share in the lithium sector
For Orexplore, this project represents a significant opportunity to expand our presence in the global lithium market. By offering the XCT-LIBS-XRF scanning capabilities developed under the ULiBS project, we will enhance our product offerings and improve mineral differentiation and quantification. As market demand increases, we can upgrade our fleet of scanners to handle larger volumes with the addition of LIBS-modules and software.
We are excited about the potential impact of the ULiBS project and how it aligns with our vision of sustainable mining practices and technological innovation. The project’s results will potentially shape the future of lithium exploration and extraction, and we are proud to be at the forefront of this transformative endeavor.
To learn more about how our drill core scanning technology and analysis can unlock the value in your mining operations, talk to the Orexplore team in Australia +61 8 9469 2900, Sweden +46 8599 06100 or Chile +56 9906 15646, or email [email protected]