Using tailings material from the company’s Chvaletice Manganese Project in the heart of Europe, small samples will be produced for prospective customers, primarily in Europe.
These samples will allow the prospective customers to continue or initiate the supply chain qualification work required prior to approval of battery raw materials for use in electric vehicles.
This work will be carried out in advance of larger samples to come from the Czech Republic project’s Demonstration Plant, which is targeted to begin operations in the first quarter of 2022.
Demand “increasing rapidly”
Euro Manganese CEO Marco Romero said: “Demand for sustainably produced, battery-grade manganese is increasing rapidly and there simply isn’t enough production capacity in the world to meet it today.
“New producers need to come on stream soon and undergo rigorous supply chain qualification of their products.
"The restart of our pilot plant will help us better service several prospective customers’ near-term objectives to pre-qualify new producers like us.
"With the restart of our pilot plant, we will be able to move more quickly in delivering finished-product samples, and to follow-on in early 2022 with larger samples from our Demonstration Plant.”
Plant to be refurbished
The pilot plant, which in 2018 produced exceptionally pure manganese products during process design studies for the project’s preliminary economic assessment (PEA), will be refurbished and restarted.
An initial batch of approximately 50 kilograms of high-purity electrolytic manganese metal and 150 kilograms of high-purity manganese sulphate monohydrate will be prepared.
Euro Manganese has engaged Changsha Research Institute for Mining and Metallurgy Co Ltd (CRIMM), the original operators of the pilot plant, to restart the facility with delivery of product samples targeted for the fourth quarter of 2021.
CRIMM is also lead contractor for the Demonstration Plant, which is being fabricated in China for delivery and installation at the Chvaletice Manganese Project site in the Czech Republic later this year.
This plant will recycle tailings material to produce battery-grade manganese products using the same process proposed for the full-scale commercial plant, targeted for production in late 2024/early 2025.