Canadian Mining Journal


LITHIUM: Nemaska fires up phase 1 roasting plant

Nemaska’s Whabouchi mine and mill site in northern Quebec. (Credit: Nemaska Lithium)

QUEBEC – Nemaska Lithium Quebec City has started processing spodumene concentrate from the Whabouchi mine in the thermal roasting section of its phase 1 hydrometallurgical plant in Shawinigan. The concentrate undergoes calcination and acid baking in the plant.

The company says it will take three or four weeks to build an inventory of lithium sulphate (Li2SO4) that can be processed into battery grade lithium hydroxide (LiOH). So far, 20 tonnes of lithium hydroxide have been produced at the phase 1 plant, but the lithium sulphate solution used came from a customer.

Nemaska says it has produced a dense media separation (DMS) concentrate with an average grade of 6.3% lithium oxide (Li2O) at the Whabouchi concentrator 300 km northwest of Chibougamau. SGS Lakefield has produced a concentrate of the same grade using flotation of fines that are not suitable for DMS treatment.

The feasibility study for the Whabouchi project and hydrometallurgical plant is available at