Watson-Marlow pumps perform at Cornish Lithium Shallow Geothermal Test Site

Five 500 series cased peristaltic pumps from Watson-Marlow Fluid Technology Solutions are playing an essential role in an indication plant at Cornish Lithium’s Shallow Geothermal Test Site within the UK.
Originally constructed to test the idea of extracting lithium from geothermal waters, Cornish Lithium is now working on an upgraded version of the take a look at plant as its drilling program expands, in the end with the goal of creating an environment friendly, sustainable and cost-effective lithium extraction supply chain.
The initial enquiry for pumps came from GeoCubed, a three way partnership between Cornish Lithium and Geothermal Engineering Ltd (GEL). GEL owns a deep borehole web site at United Downs in Cornwall where plans are in place to commission a £4 million ($5.2 million) pilot plant.
“GeoCubed’s course of engineers helped us to design and commission the check plant forward of the G7, which might run on shallow geothermal waters extracted from Cornish Lithium’s own analysis boreholes,” Dr Rebecca Paisley, Exploration Geochemist at Cornish Lithium, stated.
Adam Matthews, Exploration Geologist at Cornish Lithium, added: “Our shallow web site centres on a borehole that we drilled in 2019. A particular borehole pump [not Watson-Marlow] extracts the geothermal water [mildly saline, lithium-enriched water] and feeds into the demonstration processing plant.”
The 5 Watson-Marlow 530SN/R2 pumps serve two completely different parts of the take a look at plant, the primary of which extracts lithium from the waters by pumping the brine from a container up via a column containing a massive quantity of beads.
“The beads have an lively ingredient on their floor that’s selective for lithium,” Paisley defined. “As water is pumped via the column, lithium ions attach to the beads. With the lithium separated, we use two Watson-Marlow 530s to pump an acidic solution in various concentrations via the column. The acid serves to remove lithium from the beads, which we then transfer to a separate container.
“The pumps are peristaltic, so nothing but the tube comes into contact with the acid answer.”
She added: “We’re utilizing the remaining 530 series pumps to help understand what other by-products we can make from the water. For instance, we can reuse the water for secondary processes in business and agriculture. For this purpose, we’ve two other columns working in unison to strip all different components from the water as we pump it by way of.”
According to spmk700 , move fee was among the major reasons for selecting Watson-Marlow pumps.
“The column needed a circulate rate of 1-2 litres per minute to fit with our test scale, so the 530 pumps were perfect,” he says. “The other consideration was choosing between handbook or automated pumps. At the time, because it was bench scale, we went for handbook, as we knew it would be simple to make changes while we had been nonetheless experimenting with course of parameters. However, any future industrial lithium extraction system would in fact benefit from full automation.
Paisley added: “The beauty of having these five pumps is that we will use them to help evaluate other technologies moving forward. Lithium extraction from the kind of waters we find in Cornwall just isn’t undertaken anywhere else on the earth on any scale – the water chemistry here is exclusive.
“It is actually important for us to undertake on-site check work with a variety of completely different companies and technologies. We want to devise probably the most environmentally accountable resolution utilizing the optimum lithium recovery technique, at the lowest possible working price. Using native companies is a half of our technique, notably as continuity of provide is important.”
To assist fulfil the requirements of the following check plant, Cornish Lithium has enquired after more 530SN/R2 pumps from Watson-Marlow.
“We’ve additionally requested a quote for a Qdos one hundred twenty dosing pump from Watson-Marlow, so we can add a certain quantity of acid into the system and achieve pH stability,” Matthews says. “We’ll be doing extra drilling in the coming 12 months, which is able to permit us to test our technology on a quantity of sites.”

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