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

Five 500 collection cased peristaltic pumps from Watson-Marlow Fluid Technology Solutions are enjoying an essential role in a demonstration plant at Cornish Lithium’s Shallow Geothermal Test Site within the UK.
Originally constructed to check the concept of extracting lithium from geothermal waters, Cornish Lithium is now engaged on an upgraded model of the check plant as its drilling program expands, ultimately with the goal of creating an efficient, sustainable and cost-effective lithium extraction supply chain.
The initial enquiry for pumps came from GeoCubed, a three means partnership between Cornish Lithium and Geothermal Engineering Ltd (GEL). GEL owns a deep borehole site at United Downs in Cornwall the place plans are in place to commission a £4 million ($5.2 million) pilot plant.
“GeoCubed’s process engineers helped us to design and fee the test plant ahead of the G7, which would run on shallow geothermal waters extracted from Cornish Lithium’s own analysis boreholes,” Dr Rebecca Paisley, Exploration Geochemist at Cornish Lithium, stated.
digital pressure gauge , Exploration Geologist at Cornish Lithium, added: “Our shallow website centres on a borehole that we drilled in 2019. A special borehole pump [not Watson-Marlow] extracts the geothermal water [mildly saline, lithium-enriched water] and feeds into the demonstration processing plant.”

The five Watson-Marlow 530SN/R2 pumps serve two totally different parts of the test plant, the first of which extracts lithium from the waters by pumping the brine from a container up via a column containing a giant number of beads.
“The beads have an active ingredient on their floor that is selective for lithium,” Paisley explained. “As water is pumped by way of the column, lithium ions connect to the beads. With the lithium separated, we use two Watson-Marlow 530s to pump an acidic resolution in varied concentrations through 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.”

pressure gauge added: “We’re utilizing the remaining 530 sequence pumps to help perceive what other by-products we will make from the water. For occasion, we are ready to reuse the water for secondary processes in business and agriculture. For this purpose, we have two other columns working in unison to strip all different components from the water as we pump it by way of.”

According to Matthews, move fee was among the primary causes for choosing Watson-Marlow pumps.
“The column wanted a move price of 1-2 litres per minute to suit with our check scale, so the 530 pumps were ideal,” he says. “The different consideration was choosing between guide or automated pumps. At the time, because it was bench scale, we went for handbook, as we knew it will be straightforward to make adjustments whereas we have been nonetheless experimenting with course of parameters. However, any future commercial lithium extraction system would in fact take advantage of full automation.
Paisley added: “The great thing about having these five pumps is that we will use them to help evaluate other technologies shifting forward. Lithium extraction from the sort of waters we discover in Cornwall just isn’t undertaken anywhere else on the earth on any scale – the water chemistry right here is exclusive.
“It is actually important for us to undertake on-site take a look at work with a big selection of completely different corporations and applied sciences. We wish to devise essentially the most environmentally responsible answer using the optimum lithium recovery technique, at the lowest potential operating value. Using local firms is part of our strategy, particularly as continuity of supply is vital.”

To assist fulfil the requirements of the subsequent check plant, Cornish Lithium has enquired after extra 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 are ready to add a certain amount of acid into the system and achieve pH steadiness,” Matthews says. “We’ll be doing more drilling in the coming 12 months, which is able to allow us to test our technology on multiple sites.”


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