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Cornish mining startup to use satellites to find lithium

Innovate UK back satellite firm that is working on detecting lithium in the west of England

A mining startup based in Cornwall has partnered with a state-backed satellite company in order to find lithium in the UK’s west country.

Cornish Lithium and Satellite Applications Catapult – which has received £85,000 (US$118,500) the government’s Technology Strategy brand, otherwise known as Innovate UK – are to develop a new technique of finding metal.

The project aims to extract lithium, which can be used for batteries and electric vehicles, from salt water pumped from wells which could be as deep as 1km.

“We are looking to see whether there are signatures above ground that we can detect via satellite that will help us identify where some of the deposits are,” stated Stuart Martin, Chief Executive of Satellite Applications Catapult.

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Martin added that although the project is still in its very early stages, it is looking very positive.

If the technology is successful, the satellite company will create a map for Cornish Lithium in order for it to narrow down locations of usable deposits.

“We believe that techniques developed from this study will prove of great interest to the mining industry globally given the growing importance of Earth Observation techniques as an unobtrusive exploration tool worldwide,” said Jeremy Wrathall, Chief Executive of Cornish Lithium.