The Electric Vehicles Battery Mine: Mining Rare-Earth Elements

Electric Vehicles (EV) are accelerating our society into the future. The inherent benefits of driving an EV for the consumer are many in number, from lower running costs and tax incentives to environmental benefits and grant opportunities. From that perspective alone it’s no wonder that Bloomberg forecast that by 2040 over 54% of new car sales will be Electric Vehicles.

With such a roaring demand, there are plenty of upsides for miners in the future. Lithium, a rare-earth element used in the manufacture of EV batteries, is swiftly becoming an incredibly important commodity. Used not only in batteries, but in glass, ceramics and medicine too. The mineral, extracted from hard rock or underground reservoirs beneath dried lakes, is peaking in demand, being paramount to the emerging green economy.

 

As mentioned, Lithium can be extracted from two sources, hard rock, or underground reservoirs called “Salar Brines”. The former of the two processes is difficult and significantly costlier, while the latter is much more economical. Lithium is extracted from brines by pumping salt rich water through Seawater transport hose assemblies to the surface into a series of evaporation ponds. Due to the fact most of these brines occur in areas with low rain levels and high levels of sunlight, natural solar evaporation provides a free and clean method of extracting salts such as potassium, and more importantly, Lithium. Once the lithium chloride is deemed to be of a high enough concentration, the mineral is pumped to a recovery plant, where it is filtered and produced to be used in a variety of products, including EV batteries.

 

Besides the essential need for lithium, other rare-earth elements such as cobalt and nickel are needed to produce rechargeable batteries. Demand for both commodities have never been higher, with cobalt demand tripling in the past five years and projections hinting to at least doubling within the next two years.

 

Coupled with the increase in demand and projections of new-car sales are prospective government policies, with the UK banning sales of petrol and diesel engines by 2040 and Ireland outright banning carbon emission engines by the year 2050. This will lead to a wide-spread adoption of electric vehicles (or perhaps flying cars) and further demand on mining companies to produce more essential minerals.

 

Time will tell how miners cope with the excessive demand, but until then we must continue to produce to capacity.

 

For More Information From Our Expert Engineers On The Best Hose Assembly For Your Mining Needs, Contact sales@cavmac.co.uk Or Call Us On +353 (49) 555 2340 Today!

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