Diversified Australian exploration junior PepinNini Lithium (ASX: PNN) has announced an initial lithium and potassium resource estimate at its wholly-owned Rincon lithium brine project in the Salta province of Argentina.
The company this morning reported a measured and indicated resource of 60,000 tonnes of lithium carbonate equivalent and 270,000t of potash, with an inferred 6000t of lithium and 26,000t of potash at the project, located in what is commonly referred to the “lithium triangle” of Argentina, Chile and Bolivia.
The resource has been defined over a 2.54 square kilometre footprint at Rincon, using results from core drilling and depth-specific packer sampling.
Initial measured, indicated and inferred figures have been derived from polygons surrounding exploration boreholes, totalling 210m of core drilling.
The resource estimate will allow PepinNini to progress to the next stage of development for lithium production.
Global lithium demand set to grow
Lithium is considered a valuable resource, with global battery consumption set to significantly increase over the next decade, placing pressure on the battery supply chain and worldwide lithium market.
Research indicates that global lithium demand will increase from 181,000t of lithium carbonate equivalent in 2015 to more than 500,000t lithium carbonate equivalent by 2025.
High-grade lithium ores and brines are the primary source for commercial lithium production, and the area that PepinNini operates in is believed to contain one of the world’s largest and best quality reserves of lithium-brine.
The Andes mountains for example, hold a large saline body with brine deposits generated by water filtered through the subsoil.
Brine of the Salars (Salt lakes) in the country’s Puna region also possesses high concentrations of potassium, lithium and boron.