May 25, 2024

Lithium in India

  • The two hill States of Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand would be taken up by the Geological Survey of India (GSI) in its field season – 2023-24 for lithium exploration.
  • The two States have been listed as probable destinations “because of topographical and geological similarities to Jammu and Kashmir” region.
  • Recently, Geological Survey of India established Lithium inferred resources of 5.9 million tonnes in Salal-Haimana area of Reasi District of Jammu & Kashmir.
    • ‘Inferred’ mineral resource is part of a resource for which quantity, grade and mineral content are estimated only with a low level of confidence.
  • Other potential sites in India
    • Igneous rocks of Marlagalla–Allapatna region of Karnataka’s Mandya district.
    • From brines of Sambhar and Pachpadra areas, Rajasthan and Rann of Kutch, Gujarat.
  • Lithium is generally produced from two different deposit types:
    • Brines Operations: Pump saline brines with high lithium content from beneath the surface and lithium is concentrated by way of evaporation, before brine is sent to processing facilities for production of lithium hydroxide.
    • Hard-rock operations: In this, ore is extracted using conventional mining techniques before it is concentrated by way of crushing, and separated to produce a concentrate.

About Lithium

  • It is soft , shiny grey metal found in the earth’s crust.
  • It has lowest density of all metals.
  • Reacts vigorously with water.
  • It does not occur as the metal in nature.
  • Spodumene, petalite, lepidoite, and amblygonite are the important miner-als containing lithium.
  • Applications of Lithium
    • Primarily used to build the rechargeable batteries.
    • Lithium alloys are lighter and strong in nature.
    • Other compounds of Lithium
      • Lithium Chloride: One of the most hygroscopic materials known, and is used in air conditioning and industrial drying systems
      • Lithium Carbonate: Drugs to treat manic depression.
      • Lithium Stearate: all-purpose and high-temperature lubricant.
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