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Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Western Lithium shares rise on battery plan

53 minutes ago by Thomson Reuters
  * U.S. lab to help develop battery specs for WLC's lithium
* Shares rise 20.48 percent to C$0.50 on TSX

Oct 5 (Reuters) - Shares of Western Lithium USA Corp <WLC.TO> rose more than 20 percent on Wednesday after the company said it is working with a U.S. government laboratory to develop battery applications for the lithium carbonate it plans to mine.

Under the agreement, the company will pay the Department of Energy's Argonne National Laboratory to help it commercialize lithium produced from clay deposits at its Kings Valley lithium project in Nevada. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Western Lithium's shares were up 20.48 percent at 50 Canadian cents at midday on Wednesday on the Toronto Stock Exchange.
The Nevada-based, Canadian-listed company has produced high quality lithium carbonate - used in lithium-ion batteries, ceramics and glass - in pilot studies.

The work with Argonne, which is expected to take about a year, will help the company refine its processes and create battery specifications for its lithium product.

Producing battery-grade lithium carbonate is a key step toward securing customers for the eventual development of the Kings Valley mine.

Western Lithium is also building a demonstration plant to study the cost competitiveness of the project and plans to have a prefeasibility study done this month.

($1=$1.05 Canadian) (Reporting by Julie Gordon; editing by Peter Galloway)
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