Arizona is cashed-up to advance its flagship Big Sandy lithium project after wrapping up a June quarter spent positioning itself to be a research and processing leader.

Following the receipt of $23.2m from the first tranche of a $32.5m share placement announced in March, the company has $42.3m in cash as of 30 June 2022 to advance its objectives.

Shareholder approval for the balance of the capital raising will be sought during the general meeting to be held on 14 July.

Arizona Lithium (ASX:AZL) managing director Paul Lloyd said the June quarter was a critical period spent positioning the company to be a future supplier of lithium for the rapidly growing electric vehicle industry as well as a future leader in lithium research and processing.

This includes signing a five-year lease for a world-class lithium research centre in Phoenix, Arizona, which will study the extraction of lithium from various ores and brines as well as the production of battery-grade lithium chemicals for current and future battery technologies.

It will showcase the processing steps required for AZL’s Big Sandy and Lordsburg lithium projects, the former of which boasts a 320,000t lithium carbonate equivalent resource in shallow sedimentary hosted deposits.

“AZL expects the facility to attract some of the best talent from around the world, which will significantly benefit the company’s Big Sandy project, but also the Lordsburg Lithium Brine project,” Lloyd noted.

“We are pleased to commit to the state of Arizona for both the Research Facility and also our processing facility, and I would like to thank the Arizona Commerce Authority for contributing a US$1m ($1.48m) grant to the company, with Arizona also offering significant incentives and financial programs of up to over US$100m.”

Bench-scale testing success

The move to establish the research facility follows successful completion of the Hazen Research bench-scale test program which validated the initial Big Sandy design basis and flowsheet.

Hazen had used the design and flowsheet to produce a 99.8% battery grade lithium carbonate from Big Sandy project clays, indicating that the project can supply battery material to the burgeoning North American market.

Its research also demonstrated that size-based concentration could turn 71% of the lithium resource into a concentrate with 36% of the processed ore’s mass while lithium leaching can extract 88% of the lithium contained within the concentrate.

That this was achieved with a marked reduction in sulfuric acid reagent consumption from 490kg/mt to under 180kg/mt is also pleasing as it points to a significant reduction in processing cost.

“We aim to further build upon and refine Hazen’s work at the new Research Center, which will be spearheaded by the company’s chief technical officer, Brett Rabe,” Lloyd added.



This article was developed in collaboration with Arizona Lithium, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing.

This article does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.