Commercial production begins at 5E Boron Americas Complex

5E Advanced Materials, Inc. has announced that commercial operations have begun at the company’s industry-leading 5E Boron Americas Complex.

The 5E Boron Americas Complex, which has a US government Critical Infrastructure designation, will be instrumental in developing robust, sustainable supply chains for boron and lithium.

Speaking on the development, Susan Brennan, Chief Executive Officer at 5E Advanced Materials, said: “I am proud to announce that 5E has achieved the most significant milestone in our company’s history, as we have recently commenced commercial production of boric acid at the 5E Boron America’s Complex.

“This is a significant strategic step forward in the company’s evolution, and the initial results affirm the high-quality boric acid resource and further validate our initial operational assumptions, representing the foundation of our project economics.

“We expect our operational progress and success to build throughout the year, facilitating discussions with stakeholders around funding options for the Phase 1 commercial facility and executing commercial contracts.”

5E Boron Americas Complex initiates commercial production

The 5E Boron Americas Complex has successfully completed commissioning and is now operational.

External engineering contractors finalised the electrical work by March 15. Since the commencement of mining, over 50,000 gallons of PLS have been accumulated.

Independent third-party analysis using inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP) confirms a run-of-mine head grade of 5.5%.

The small-scale facility will initially produce 2,000 short tons of boric acid and aim for an initial production of lithium carbonate, with plans to increase production to a run rate of 9,000 short tons and expand lithium production.

Currently operating 24/7 as shift operators are trained and staffed, the facility will supply high-quality commercial products for customer qualification to secure offtake contracts and funding for phase one operations.

The company’s Lithium Skid Unit has been delivered to the site with the expectation of integrating it into the facility in the near term.

Generating funding opportunities

5E has recently submitted a proposal response to the Department of Energy for a grant aimed at enhancing its lithium extraction efforts.

If the company is awarded funding through this submission, it will be directed towards increasing the capacity of its facility to extract lithium carbonate, potentially leading to higher lithium yields and improved project economics.

Furthermore, the company is actively advancing awareness of boron with various federal agencies, building on the momentum created by the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2024, which calls for a study into boron supply chains.

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