American Battery Technology Company (ABTC)’s Tonopah Flats Lithium Project encompasses one of the largest known measured, indicated, and inferred lithium claystone resource deposits in the United States. To access this untapped resource, we are commercializing our first-of-kind lithium extraction technology to provide a secure, responsible domestic supply of lithium. The project is located about 5 miles west of Tonopah, Nevada, a historic mining town, where several of our ABTC team members have called home for many years. ABTC community liaison, Shirley Perkins, proudly supports various local community activities. In recent months, these efforts included participating in several events that promoted education and spread awareness of the opportunities provided by the burgeoning lithium industry and encouraged further engagement and collaboration with community members. Shirley also serves on the board of Tonopah Main Street, a development-focused nonprofit dedicated to improving quality of life and revitalizing the business climate while preserving Tonopah’s historical past. Shirley lives our ABTC value of “leaving things better than we found them” every day.   

ABTC Community Relations Liaison, Shirley Perkins, at the ABTC’s office in Tonopah.

The following are a few examples of Shirley’s work to support our Tonopah and surrounding communities.  

Tonopah High School Career Fair  

The ABTC Resources Team staffed a booth at Tonopah High School’s 2024 Career Fair to share personal experiences and future career opportunities in the battery materials industry, from mining to chemical refining to engineering.  With over 300 participants, the fair featured 46 presenters from businesses, colleges, trade schools, and military branches.  The fair engaged over 190 middle and high school students from local schools.  

The event, which brought together many professionals from various businesses and agencies as well as local teachers and staff, was coordinated by the Tonopah-Nye County Extension Office of the University of Nevada, Reno Office. The ABTC team was thrilled to participate and open conversations with young students concerning their potential paths after high school. We look forward to continued support of educational outreach efforts with our local community, and sharing the future job opportunities in our state as Nevada continues to grow our clean energy economy.  

Over 300 participants joined for the 2024 Tonopah High School Career Fair. The ABTC Resources Team – including chief resources officer Scott Jolcover, head of resources Ross Leisinger, and community liaison Shirley Perkins, and joined by director of human resources Daphne Gulling and technical project manager Tim McMullen. 

There is Much to Learn about Lithium, and Even More to Learn about ABTC’s Tonopah Flats Lithium Project 

In March of 2024, members of ABTC’s resources team hosted an informal lithium session in Tonopah. Dr. LeeAnn Munk, professor of Geological Sciences at the University of Alaska Anchorage, was in the area with several graduate students studying the geochemistry of lithium clay deposits, and requested to hold a session where collaborators could come together and discuss the geology and occurrence of lithium. Dr. Munk is a geochemist involved in climate solutions research centered around lithium as a sustainable resource for future energy needs, and has published several papers on lithium occurrences in Clayton Valley, NV.  

ABTC invited geologists from several of the other lithium projects in the area to participate, and Dr. Munk shared her recent insights into claystone deposit formation. This was an opportunity for ABTC to collaborate and share knowledge with potential lithium experts and prospective future employees as we work to commercialize an economic extraction model for the claystone deposit formations found in the Tonopah area. The team enjoyed our discussions and looks forward to continued collaboration with fellow professionals and researchers as our work in Tonopah progresses. 

Chief geologist Greg Kuzma discussing the Tonopah Flats Project while inspecting core samples.

Annual Nevada State Mining Championships  

Every Saturday before Memorial Day, the Nevada State Mining Championships takes place in Tonopah. Drilling contests have been held in Tonopah since 1900 when silver was first discovered, and the modern-day competition includes single-jack drilling as well as individual and team mucking. For the last three years, American Battery Technology Company has supported the Mining Championship by celebrating the event’s winners. Hundreds of spectators show up every year to watch men, women, and youth categories for each competition, and the 2024 event featured one of the largest crowds to date.  

Supporting the Nevada State Mining Championships provides ABTC with the opportunity to support an important part of historic preservation – and, in the spirit of contest, support people in the mining industry as they perfect and demonstrate their specialized skillsets. The team is already looking forward to supporting this event again next year! 

The Nevada State Mining Championships as part of the annual Jim Butler Days festival in Tonopah is a week-long yearly festival full of activities honoring the town’s history and celebrating its founding with a parade, pageantry, music, bull rides, and more. The festival is the biggest event of the year in Tonopah and allows attendees to experience a glimpse of what life was like in the Old West with blacksmithing demonstrations, gold panning, and the Jim Butler rodeo stampede.  

Competitors at the Nevada State Mining Championships in Tonopah, Nevada