Lithium brine extraction and technology development company Prairie Lithium has acquired 188,000 acres of subsurface mineral permits in Saskatchewan, Canada, for an undisclosed sum.

The acquisition is part of Prairie Lithium’s plan to increase its total mineral holdings in Saskatchewan to more than 220,000 acres.

Prairie Lithium is claimed to be the largest active lithium brine developer in Saskatchewan.

This acquisition follows its successful direct lithium extraction (DLE) proof of process pilot project completed last year in Saskatchewan.

The project involved the installation of Prairie Lithium’s DLE equipment on an active oil and gas site in Saskatchewan.

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It enabled lithium extraction from the brine that was later converted into a lithium sulphate concentrate. It was further converted into lithium carbonate.

Lithium carbonate and lithium hydroxide are important compounds used in lithium-ion batteries.

In a press statement, Prairie Lithium said: “With lithium-ion battery manufacturing increasing around the world, the price of lithium compounds have increased drastically over the past few months, sending shockwaves throughout the supply chain.

“Demand for lithium is expected to outpace supply within the next few years unless, in Management’s view, new mines are brought into production at a record pace.”

Last month, QMC Quantum Minerals secured permit for the 2021 work programme at the Irgon Lithium Mine Project in Manitoba, Canada.

The project comprises the former Irgon Mine and several other known spodumene-bearing pegmatite dikes.

The work programme involves the stripping of overburden, prospecting, and surface and channel sampling, in addition to obtaining a bulk sample.