WA’s ‘battery valley’ begins to take shape

Western Australia’s ‘battery valley’ centre for processing and manufacture of battery materials is taking shape with approval for a third facility in the Kwinana industrial area south of Perth.

High purity alumina (HPA) producer FYI Resources (ASX: FYI) has been offered and accepted a site within the Kwinana area to set up an HPA refinery.

HPA is a high value, versatile material used in lithium-ion battery technologies as a coating for separators.

While high purity alumina is normally made from bauxite, FYI’s process starts with kaolin and follows a simple, low cost series of steps.

FYI developed the process and proved it in a pilot plant in October when it completed continuous ‘end to end’ production trials.

The WA government has a goal of creating a future battery industry based on the state’s vast mineral resources, with Kwinana emerging as the hub.

FYI will join Tianqi Lithium which will soon begin to commission of their first stage lithium hydroxide chemical processing plant at Kwinana.

Nearby Covalent Lithium, a joint venture between Wesfarmers and SQM of Chile is planning to construct a lithium hydroxide refinery.

FYI managing director Roland Hill said: “Having our HPA refinery located in this zone is a real asset to the company and is integral to our fully integrated production strategy.”

The Kwinana industrial area is a major industrial centre, with numerous processing plants employing 30,000.

Picture: FYI Resources

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