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E3 Metals Achieves Major Milestone with Breakthrough Performance of its Proprietary Lithium Extraction Technology

  • Additional testing demonstrates increased concentration of up to 100 times, resulting in lithium grades of up to 5367 mg/L
  • Increased concentrations continue to yield high recoveries and low impurities
  • Results confirm continued advancement of our proprietary ion-exchange extraction technology and provide continued confidence in developing towards the commercial viability of the project


CALGARY, March 4, 2019 /CNW/ - E3 METALS CORP. (TSXV:ETMC.V - News) (FSE:OU7A.F - News) (OTC:EEMMF - News) (the "Company" or "E3" or "E3 Metals") is pleased to announce it has achieved a major milestone in the development of its proprietary Ion Exchange Lithium Extraction Technology ("Extraction Technology").  A series of tests were conducted on the sorbent incorporating the most recent enhancements as outlined in our December 4, 2018 news release. These enhancements have enabled E3 to create a more robust sorbent, resulting in higher lithium concentrations of up to 5367 mg/L lithium, compared to our previous level of 1498 mg/L.  Tests were conducted to demonstrate the performance of the enhanced sorbent by concentrating 50 times and 100 times, with resulting lithium concentrations of 3142 mg/L and 5367 mg/L, respectively. This was accomplished without sacrificing lithium recovery and maintaining very low impurities in the concentrate feedstock.

E3 Metals Corp (CNW Group/E3 Metals Corp.)

Lithium recovery was 98% with 50 times concentration and 84% with 100 times, confirming very high efficiency. Greater than 99% impurity removal was observed in both cases (Table 1). E3 Metals' Extraction Technology optimization has so far demonstrated an increase in lithium concentration from 60 mg/L to over 5000 mg/L in the latest tests. Increasing the concentration through our Extraction Technology and producing a high purity lithium concentrate feedstock, combined with the high flow rates from the Leduc Reservoir, are key factors behind demonstrating the feasibility of the project and moving towards a commercial lithium production flow sheet.

"This increase in concentration using our proprietary Extraction Technology is the key to unlocking the value of our vast, yet lower grade, resource. These results move us a significant step toward supporting E3's goal of becoming an industry leading, low-cost producer of battery grade lithium products," commented Chris Doornbos, President and CEO of E3 Metals Corp. "We have demonstrated the ability to significantly increase our lithium concentration without using additional energy. The higher upfront concentration means less volume to handle downstream from our lithium Extraction Technology and should reduce the energy, inputs and potentially the capital and operating costs required to generate lithium hydroxide. These results continually demonstrate an innovative and robust process developed by the University of Alberta and supported by Green Centre Canada, with funding from Alberta Innovates."

Optimizing the performance of our proprietary Extraction Technology is a key part of E3 Metals' larger development plan as outlined in the September 28, 2018 news release. The ultimate goal is to maximize the performance of the sorbent and to demonstrate it works on a commercial production scale. This is likely to have a significant impact on the efficiencies of the overall production flow sheet when E3's Extraction Technology is combined with other available industry technology to produce lithium hydroxide.

To reach the target for battery grade lithium hydroxide (LiOH•H2O), lithium is refined, and impurities removed, to reach a 99.5% or greater purity of LiOH•H2O.  Removing impurities and concentrating the lithium in a single step is critical to the overall production flow sheet. If these concentration levels can be consistently achieved under full cycle process flow conditions and in larger field-based pilot plant testing, the Company believes the most significant development hurdle will have been achieved.

Click Here for more information on E3 Metals' lithium production flow sheet and the Company's development plans.

Figure 1: Graphical results of the lithium extraction test work

 Element

Raw Brine
(mg/L)

Concentrate
50x (mg/L)

Concentrate
100x (mg/L)

Li

60

3142

5367

Na

>50000

76

136

Mg

2574

247

439

K

5131

19

27

Ca

16477

561

505

B

261

3

4

Sr

791

39

33

Li recovery
(%)

-

98%

84%

 

About E3 Metals Corp.

E3 Metals is a lithium development company moving towards commercialization of lithium production in Alberta through continued development of its proprietary Ion Exchange Lithium Extraction Technology. E3 plans to quickly move towards the production of high purity, battery grade, lithium hydroxide. 

The Company combines a significant resource with the right technology solutions that have the potential to deliver lithium to market from one of the best development jurisdictions in the world.  Our prolific Leduc Reservoir hosts lithium enriched brine with 6.7 million tonnes LCE inferred mineral resource1 delineated to date. The development of this resource through brine production is a well understood venture in Alberta, where this brine is currently being produced to surface through extensive oil and gas development.

While the lithium brine and hydrocarbons are mutually exclusive, the Leduc Reservoir can support the production of brine few others can boast, with one well having the ability to bring 10,000 m3/day (115 L/s) to surface. With an average and consistent grade of 77.4 mg/L in the Clearwater Resource Area1, E3 Metals' proprietary Ion Exchange Lithium Extraction Technology can quickly produce a concentrate with a grade over 5000 mg/L. With 99% of the impurities removed at the same time and recoveries averaging 90%2, this concentrate feedstock is likely to be processed directly utilizing conventional lithium production methods to produce high purity lithium hydroxide (LiOH∙H2O). The Company's plans are to deliver a process facility of 10,000 tonnes/year LiOH by 2022 and continue expansion to an eventual 50,000 tonnes/year.

More information about E3 Metals can be found on our website by visiting: www.e3metalscorp.com.

ON BEHALF OF THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS,

Chris Doornbos, President & CEO
E3 METALS CORP.

Chris Doornbos (P.Geo), CEO and Director of E3 Metals Corp., is a Qualified Person as defined by NI 43-101 and has read and approved the technical information contained in this announcement.

1: E3 Metals has released information on three 43-101 Technical Reports totalling a resource of 6.7 Mt LCE.  The Central Clearwater Resource Area (CCRA) Technical Report, identifying 1.9Mt LCE (inferred), is dated effective October 27, 2017, and the North Rocky Resource Area (NRRA) Technical Report was dated effective October 27, 2017, identifies 0.9Mt LCE (inferred). A third report for the Exshaw West Resource Area (EWRA), identifies 3.9Mt LCE (inferred) and was filed on June 15th 2018, effective June 4th 2018.  All reports are available on SEDAR (www.sedar.com)

2: E3 Metals News Release, December 4, 2018: Development of E3 Metals' Extraction Technology Improves Lithium Concentration and Recovery. Available on www.e3metalscorp.com and SEDAR (www.sedar.com)

Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

This news release includes certain forward-looking statements concerning the potential of the Company's projects and technology, as well as management's objectives, strategies, beliefs and intentions. Forward looking statements are frequently identified by such words as "may", "will", "plan", "expect", "anticipate", "estimate", "intend" and similar words referring to future events and results. Forward-looking statements are based on the current opinions and expectations of management. All forward-looking information is inherently uncertain and subject to a variety of assumptions, risks and uncertainties, including the speculative nature of mineral exploration and development, fluctuating commodity prices, the effectiveness and feasibility of emerging lithium extraction technologies which have not yet been tested or proven on a commercial scale or on the Company's brine, competitive risks and the availability of financing, as described in more detail in our recent securities filings available at www.sedar.com. Actual events or results may differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements and we caution against placing undue reliance thereon. We assume no obligation to revise or update these forward-looking statements except as required by applicable law.

SOURCE E3 Metals Corp.


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