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Cost-effective, sustainable and responsible extraction routes for recovering distinct critical metals and industrial minerals as by-products from key European hard-rock lithium projects

Objective

Europe is 100% reliant on imports of Li for the Li-ion batteries that are central to decarbonising the energy and mobility sectors. Some fraction of our needs can come from recycling the batteries already in use, but realistically, primary supply will still have to cover 90% of the Li requirement. Paradoxically, Europe hosts 27 Li hard-rock (pegmatite & Rare-Metal Granite) deposits, representing vast lithium resources (8.8–21.7 Mt Li2O). However, the identified potential remains largely untouched, which is partly due to a reluctant attitude towards primary (Li) mining in Europe. Europeans are very enthusiastic about EVs, but rather less so about the necessary mining & refining of Li-bearing ores to realise them. By upscaling and integrating results from earlier projects, EXCEED’s 15 partners develop a new mining paradigm, i.e. zero-waste, multi-metal/mineral mining. This will be combined with sustainable mineral processing to provide us with additional critical raw materials (CRMs: rare earths, Nb, Ta, W, Be) and industrial minerals (quartz, feldspar and micas), coming from 4 lithium mines (as case studies) in Finland (Keliber), Portugal (Savannah), France (Imerys) and the UK (Imerys). The project adopts a mineral-centric, integrated methodology based on an innovative predictive and forensic geometallurgy, supported by enhanced in-line characterisation tools and the development of digital twins. EXCEED develops, upscales and demonstrates cost-effective, sustainable and responsible extraction routes for recovering CRMs and industrial minerals (the latter for use as low-carbon ceramics and cements), as by-products from the 4 Li-bearing hard-rock ores. EXCEED’s long-term impact includes the replication of the EXCEED solutions to the other 23 European pegmatite and Rare-Metal Granite deposits, thus boosting domestic CRM production (up to 21.7 Mt Li2O & 1.5 Mt of other CRMs), in a way that gains public support by respecting the environment and creating local jobs.

Coordinator

TEKNOLOGIAN TUTKIMUSKESKUS VTT OY
Net EU contribution
€ 1 382 341,00
Address
Tekniikantie 21
02150 Espoo
Finland

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Region
Manner-Suomi Helsinki-Uusimaa Helsinki-Uusimaa
Activity type
Research Organisations
Other funding
€ 0,25

Participants (14)

IMERYS
France
Net EU contribution
€ 312 637,50
Address
43 Quai De Grenelle
75015 Paris

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Region
Ile-de-France Ile-de-France Paris
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
Other funding
€ 133 987,50
CASPEO SARL
France
Net EU contribution
€ 333 025,00
Address
Avenue Claude Guillemin 3
45060 Orleans

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SME

The organization defined itself as SME (small and medium-sized enterprise) at the time the Grant Agreement was signed.

Yes
Region
Centre — Val de Loire Centre — Val de Loire Loiret
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
Other funding
€ 142 725,00
INSTITUT DE L'INNOVATION DURABLE -SUSTAINABLE INNOVATION INSTITUTE
France
Net EU contribution
€ 398 750,00
Address
14 Rue Andre Del Sarte
75018 Paris

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Region
Ile-de-France Ile-de-France Paris
Activity type
Other
Other funding
€ 0,00
KELIBER TECHNOLOGY OY
Finland
Net EU contribution
€ 237 562,50
Address
Toholammintie 496
69600 Kaustinen

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Region
Manner-Suomi Pohjois- ja Itä-Suomi Keski-Pohjanmaa
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
Other funding
€ 101 812,50
BETOLAR OYJ
Finland
Net EU contribution
€ 410 900,00
Address
Mannilantie 9
43300 Kannonkoski

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SME

The organization defined itself as SME (small and medium-sized enterprise) at the time the Grant Agreement was signed.

Yes
Region
Manner-Suomi Länsi-Suomi Keski-Suomi
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
Other funding
€ 176 100,00
SAVANNAH LITHIUM LDA
Portugal
Net EU contribution
€ 116 108,13
Address
Rua Jose Eigenmann 90
4715 199 Braga

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Region
Continente Norte Cávado
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
Other funding
€ 49 760,62
DYNAMIC & SECURITY COMPUTATIONS SL
Spain
Net EU contribution
€ 375 812,50
Address
Camarena 177 Local
28047 Madrid

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SME

The organization defined itself as SME (small and medium-sized enterprise) at the time the Grant Agreement was signed.

Yes
Region
Comunidad de Madrid Comunidad de Madrid Madrid
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
Other funding
€ 161 062,50
WIENERBERGER NV
Belgium
Net EU contribution
€ 462 240,63
Address
Kapel Ter Bede 121
8500 Kortrijk

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Region
Vlaams Gewest Prov. West-Vlaanderen Arr. Kortrijk
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
Other funding
€ 198 103,12
UNIVERSITE DE LORRAINE
France
Net EU contribution
€ 1 799 250,00
Address
Cours Leopold 34
54052 Nancy Cedex

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Region
Grand Est Lorraine Meurthe-et-Moselle
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Other funding
€ 0,00
KATHOLIEKE UNIVERSITEIT LEUVEN
Belgium
Net EU contribution
€ 1 655 000,00
Address
Oude Markt 13
3000 Leuven

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Region
Vlaams Gewest Prov. Vlaams-Brabant Arr. Leuven
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Other funding
€ 0,00
GEOLOGIAN TUTKIMUSKESKUS
Finland
Net EU contribution
€ 1 346 128,75
Address
Vuorimiehentie 5
02151 Espoo

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Region
Manner-Suomi Helsinki-Uusimaa Helsinki-Uusimaa
Activity type
Research Organisations
Other funding
€ 0,00
OULUN YLIOPISTO
Finland
Net EU contribution
€ 1 065 522,50
Address
Pentti Kaiteran Katu 1
90014 Oulu

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Region
Manner-Suomi Pohjois- ja Itä-Suomi Pohjois-Pohjanmaa
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Other funding
€ 0,00
POLYTECHNEIO KRITIS
Greece
Net EU contribution
€ 840 250,00
Address
Building E4, Technical University Campus Counoupidiana
731 00 Chania

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Region
Χανιά Κρήτη Νησιά Αιγαίου
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Other funding
€ 0,00
MEAB CHEMIE TECHNIK GMBH
Germany
Net EU contribution
€ 442 575,00
Address
Dennewartstrasse 25
52068 Aachen

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SME

The organization defined itself as SME (small and medium-sized enterprise) at the time the Grant Agreement was signed.

Yes
Region
Nordrhein-Westfalen Köln Städteregion Aachen
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
Other funding
€ 189 675,00