Lithium stock Standard Lithium (SLI 11.11%) is soaring today, up 21.9% as of 1:35 p.m. EDT. With shares tanking a whopping 38.9% over the last three weeks in August, today's jump, backed by an announcement from the lithium development company, is a welcome breather.
Before I tell you what Standard Lithium is up to, remember it's not a lithium mining company. Instead, it uses petrochemical resources to extract lithium directly from saltwater brine, and is developing its 150,000 acre flagship project near El Dorado, south Arkansas in partnership with German specialty chemicals company Lanxess, which already operates three brine processing plants there.
Standard Lithium says its flagship project is the "largest and most advanced" lithium brine project in the U.S. Given that south Arkansas is a brine-rich deposit region and Lanxess already operates three brine processing plants there, investors in lithium see a lot of promise in Standard Lithium and are therefore closely tracking progress at its flagship project.
On Sept. 1, Standard Lithium said it had successfully installed a lithium carbonate plant at the site. The modular, fully automated plant is based on the company's proprietary SiFT technology that can produce highest-purity (99.9%) battery-grade lithium compounds. Such compounds are typically used in lithium-ion batteries, demand for which has skyrocketed thanks to rising interest in electric vehicles.
"Our project execution efforts continue and with the final stages of commissioning and integration almost finished, we are now in the final stages of running the only continuous, 24/7 start-to-finish brine-to-carbonate plant in North America," said Standard Lithium's COO and President, Dr. Andy Robinson.
Although some analysts believe rising lithium supply could suppress prices in the near future, investors remain upbeat about major lithium-consuming end markets like electric vehicles and electronics, and are therefore not missing any opportunity to buy lithium stocks like Standard Lithium on the dip.