|Title||New Lithium Collection Method Could Boost Global Supply|
|Date||Monday February 12 2018, @10:35PM|
|from the already-in-Texas-doe-the-patent-dispute dept.|
Submitted via IRC for Bytram
With continual technological advancements in mobile devices and electric cars, the global demand for lithium has quickly outpaced the rate at which it can be mined or recycled, but a University of Texas at Austin professor and his research team may have a solution.
Benny Freeman, professor in the McKetta Department of Chemical Engineering in the Cockrell School of Engineering, and his colleagues at the Monash University Department of Chemical Engineering and the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) in Australia have recently discovered a new, efficient way to extract lithium and other metals and minerals from water. They published their findings in the Feb. 9 issue of Science Advances.
The team's technique uses a metal-organic-framework membrane that mimics the filtering function, or "ion selectivity," of biological cell membranes. The membrane process easily and efficiently separates metal ions, opening the door to revolutionary technologies in the water and mining industries and potential economic growth opportunities in Texas.
[...] In addition, the team's process could help with water desalination. Unlike the existing reverse-osmosis membranes responsible for more than half of the world's current water desalination capacity, the new membrane process dehydrates ions as they pass through the membrane channels and removes only select ions, rather than indiscriminately removing all ions. The result is a process that costs less and consumes less energy than conventional methods.
See also: http://dx.doi.org/10.1126/sciadv.aaq0066
printed from SoylentNews, New Lithium Collection Method Could Boost Global Supply on 2018-10-16 02:10:03