Australian Potash Produces First Potash Salts at Lake Wells

- October 26th, 2018

Australian Potash has successfully transferred potassium-saturated brine from one harvest pond to the next, allowing for drying and collection of potassium- and sulfate-bearing salts.

Australian Potash (ASX:APC) has successfully transferred 70 tonnes of potassium-saturated brine between harvest ponds for the second time, allowing for the drying and collection of potassium- and sulfate-bearing salts.

The Lake Wells sulfate of potash (SOP) project, located in the Northern Goldfields of Western Australia, consists of a large pre-concentration pond (P1) and three smaller harvest ponds (H1 to H3).

Raw hypersaline brine was pumped into P1 using one of the existing production bores at the project, while evaporation in P1 led to sodium chloride precipitation and the saturation of dissolved potassium and sulfate in the remaining brine solution.

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With the success of a second brine transfer, the potassium- and sulfate-bearing salts precipitated in H1 can now be harvested.

The company expects that the third and final transfer of brine into H3, the final harvest pond, will happen over the next two to three weeks to result in final crystallization of feeder or harvest salts in the ponds. A blend of salts from H1 to H3 will be processed to a refined SOP.

The company is set to produce an estimated 250 kilograms of SOP trade samples in an initial production run for delivery to memorandum of understanding (MOU) offtake partners during Q4 of this year.

Managing Director Matt Shackleton commented on the project’s progress in a statement, explaining the company’s next moves going forward.

“The Definitive Feasibility Study has entered its final phase across abstraction, evaporation and processing. We are very advanced with our permitting, with EPA approval of our Environmental Scoping Document, have granted mining leases and have made material advancements in logistics,” he said.

“We look forward to continuing to provide regular updates on the DFS over these final few months,” Shackleton added.

Also getting in on Lake Wells’ potash potential is Salt Lake Potash (ASX:SO4), which has a project separate from Australian Potash in the same area.

The two companies recently entered into an MOU and cooperation agreement to study the potential benefits of sharing infrastructure and other costs at their respective projects.

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Securities Disclosure: I, Olivia Da Silva, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.

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