Pumps for lithium extraction

Ensured process safety in conveying abrasive and aggressive lithium slurry to feed autoclaves

© jroballo

As an important component in batteries and accumulators, lithium is indispensable for our energy security and demand is constantly increasing – keyword electromobility.

The extraction of lithium presents a challenge and is very demanding. One common method is extraction from lithium-containing brine in large evaporation basins, which is not possible in many areas due to lack of space. Lithium extraction by autoclave feeding is therefore more interesting: here, lithium-containing slurry is pumped into an autoclave, where it is converted into battery-grade lithium hydroxide under high pressure.

High demands concerning pumps

In addition to low water consumptions and reasons of space, the advantage of this method is that lithium can be extracted from any location. However, lithium-containing slurry is a highly corrosive, abrasive medium that must be conveyed at a high temperature.

Double hose-diaphragm pumps in the lithium treatment process

The combination of high temperature and a very abrasive, chemically aggressive medium poses a challenge for the pumps. MULTISAFE® pumps offer several advantages that are beneficial for the reliable pumping of lithium slurry.

Firstly, the double hose-diaphragm provides hermetic separation from the hydraulic operating field. The pumped medium does not come into contact with either the pump head or the hydraulic chamber. This means that chemically aggressive fluids are protected twice as well as people and the environment. On the other hand, the pumped medium is also not contaminated, e.g., by hydraulic fluid.

High operational reliability and maximum availability

Another characteristic advantage of MULTISAFE® pumps is the linear flow path without deviation. This has a particularly favorable effect on the flow when pumping lithium slurry, which is aggressive, abrasive and interspersed with solids, even at high viscosities and results i.a. in a longer service life of the hose-diaphragms. In addition, the reduced number of wear parts and their wear resistance ensure maximum availability and reliable operation of the pump.

Even at the design stage, the requirements of the process can be individually addressed, as a large selection of materials is available for hose-diaphragms and valves.

Equipped with these features, FELUWA MULTISAFE® double hose-diaphragm pumps can be adapted to difficult chemical conditions, which are an advantage when pumping lithium.


Source: FELUWA

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