Nano One Materials (NNO.V), together with Associated Universities (AUI), has issued a proposal and letter of intent to the Chilean Clean Technology Institute to make nickel-rich (low-cobalt) cathode directly from Chilean lithium carbonate, according to a press release.
AUIs bid to build, manage and operate the institute was recently recognized by the Corporacion de Fomento de la Produccion de Chile (CORFO) council on January 4, 2021.
“Chile is one of the largest lithium producers in the world by making lithium carbonate from brine resources in the Atacama desert. We have proposed to ICTL a demonstration of Nano One’s patented one-pot process using lithium carbonate directly for the production of nickel-rich cathode materials. Our innovation avoids the need for lithium hydroxide, the costs of the required conversion plants, and the associated consumption of water and energy. Furthermore, lithium carbonate eliminates issues related to shelf life and corrosion, making it easier to handle and less costly. These advantages could disrupt the supply chain and lead to increased demand for lithium carbonate and are at the core of the proposal we have made to the Chilean Clean Technology Institute,” said Dan Blondal. CEO of Nano One.
A former long time equity guru client, Nano One’s raison d’etre is in the low-cost production of high performance lithium ion battery cathode materials commonly found in electric vehicles, and also in energy storage and consumer electronics. The processing tech allows for lower cost feedstocks while simplifying production and advancing performance for a range of cathode materials.
Nano One’s technology gives the flexibility to use either lithium carbonate or hydroxide. This is enabled through lithium with all other metal inputs in the company’s patented one-pot reaction, producing a mixed-metal intermediate powder that’s neither carbonate nor hydroxide, allowing it to leave behind finished cathode powder when processed using heat in a furnace. In direct contrast, conventional methods form mixed-metal intermediate powders that must be milled and heat-processed with lithium hydroxide powders because the required temperatures in the furnace are not compatible with lithium carbonate.
Basically, they found a way to perform the same function cheaper, and with less environmental impact. Good deal.
Nano One is down $0.34 today, and presently trading at $5.23.