Flow testing at Arizona Lithium’s Prairie project lithium brines test well has demonstrated significant upside in well productivity and confirmed high concentrations of lithium.
Daily brine production from the 16-20 test well, which was the re-entry of a suspended oil well in southeast Saskatchewan, was significantly higher than anticipated.
To put it in layman’s terms, this means that Arizona Lithium (ASX:AZL) could potentially produce more lithium than previously expected while drilling fewer production wells.
Adding further interest, the testwork has also confirmed that mineralised brines are present over 27km of the Williston Basin and provides the data required to update the project’s existing Inferred Resource of 4.1Mt of lithium carbonate equivalent, which was upgraded significantly recently.
“We are pleased to announce that we have demonstrated this well’s capability to produce more brine per day than originally anticipated, which demonstrates the potential for the wells to produce more lithium on a daily basis than previously expected,” managing director Paul Lloyd said.
“Higher sustainable production rates like this also have the potential to further decrease the future capital and operating costs associated with our wellfield infrastructure, and significantly increase the value of the project.”
High brine flow rates
The 16-20 well was pumped for 3.5 days at sustained rates of 200m3 per day and 400m3 per day to determine well performance and aquifer properties.
Using flow parameters obtained from the pump test, consulting group Fluid Domains predicted a sustainable pumping rate of 2,700 m3/day over a three-year period, which is higher than the design requirement for a field pilot plant.
A total of 875m3 of brine was pumped from the well, with 750m3 of brine being stored for further testing at the Direct Lithium Extraction (DLE) pilot plant in Emerald Park.
Lithium concentrates measured in the combined flow test was 104mg/L, which when combined with sampling programs completed on two wells in 2021, serves to illustrate elevated levels of lithium in all test wells drilled to date.
Prairie lithium project
The project in the Williston Basin of Saskatchewan, Canada, has easy access to key infrastructure including electricity, natural gas, fresh water, paved highways and railroads.
Lithium extraction could be achieved using the Prairie Lithium Ion Exchange (PLIX) tech that is based on an ion-exchange material that selectively extracts lithium from brine, using equipment which is anticipated to be readily available at commercial scale.
This has the potential for global use with testing carried out on resources from around the world.
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.
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