About the Project

Over the past two years, ABTC has been designing and optimizing its internally developed processing train for the manufacturing of battery cathode grade lithium hydroxide from Nevada-based sedimentary claystone resources. The majority of these development efforts to date have been performed with sedimentary claystone resource samples provided by partner companies in the Tonopah, Nevada region. While ABTC will continue to work with these partners to refine, test, and validate its internally developed technologies for potential commercialization at these resource sites, ABTC is also evaluating the performance of its lithium extraction and manufacturing technologies directly on its own lithium-bearing resource, the Tonopah Flats Lithium Exploration Project.

The ABTC Tonopah Flats Lithium Exploration Project currently encompasses the exploration of 517 unpatented lode mining claims covering approximately 10,340 acres of land that is administered by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) near Tonopah, Nevada. As part of this exploration, ABTC is conducting geological mapping, sampling, geochemical analysis, and proprietary extraction trials to characterize these resources and to quantify the performance of the lithium extraction and manufacturing operations. The following map is as of December 2021.

In conjunction with expanding lode claims, the American Battery Technology Company reported initial surface sampling results of the previously staked mining claims.

The ABTC field team analyzed 29 new surface sample locations, along with existing samples previously collected by other parties, and the resulting data demonstrated grades of anomalous reported lithium present from 260 ppm to 1,530 ppm in the project area. Samples with values of 300 ppm and up are typically considered very prospective in nature. The historic samples were analyzed by ALS Analytical Lab in Reno, Nevada, and the samples collected by ABTC were assayed at the American Assay Laboratory in Reno, Nevada.

As a result of the initial surface sample characterizations, ABTC submitted a Notice of Operation permit and Reclamation Bonding to the Bureau of Land Management Tonopah Field Office for subsurface samplings of these claims.

We have begun exploratory subsurface sampling to further develop this resource where the sample results will be used to define the extent of the deposit in footprint, depth, and the grades of the lithium. ABTC will continue with exploratory drilling as weather permits. Thorough analysis of these samples may take several weeks to months to complete

To support the company’s execution of a US Department of Energy funded field demonstration grant project and added opportunity to expand its sedimentary claystone lithium resource exploration work, ABTC recently closed on the purchase of a satellite office located in Tonopah, Nevada.

Project Significance

There is rapid growth in the demand for lithium-ion batteries that power our vehicles, stationary grid storage systems, and consumer electronics.  However, while the domestic US manufacturing capacities of end-use-products like electric vehicles and of lithium-ion battery cells have grown rapidly in the US in recent years, unfortunately the upstream domestic production capacities of the battery metals that supply these operations have not kept pace.  This has led to three paramount challenges:

  1. Security of Supply, less than 1% of the global manufacturing capacity of each of the primary battery metals (lithium, nickel, cobalt, and manganese) is currently within the US.  The federal government considers all four minerals to be “essential to the economic or national security of the United States.”
  2. Cost of Supply, the cost of manufacturing and importing these battery metals has grown rapidly over recent years as demand has grown at a far faster pace than new supply can enter the market.
  3. Environmental Impact of Supply, the mining of these battery metals can result in the emission of large amounts of greenhouse gases, air pollutants, and contaminated water and soil.

American Battery Technology Company is addressing all three of these challenges by developing technologies and commercializing systems for the recycling of lithium-ion batteries and the recovery of constituent battery metals as well as for the production of battery metals directly from primary mineral resources in the Western US to create a closed-loop circular economy for the domestic US battery manufacturing supply chain.

ABTC’s in-house technology development and commercialization efforts for the domestic manufacturing of battery cathode grade lithium hydroxide directly support US federal efforts to reduce dependence on foreign sources of these critical materials that may not adhere to sufficient ethical and environmental standards for battery metals sourcing and manufacturing. The construction and commissioning of ABTC’s lithium-ion battery recycling pilot facility remains the company’s primary focus, however the magnitude of the entire battery recycling industry combined cannot meet the nearly insatiable near-term demand for these critical and strategic battery metals on its own. Recycling facilities must be supplemented by low-cost, low-environmental impact, and domestic primary battery metal manufacturing facilities in order to establish a truly secure closed-loop circular battery metals supply chain.