Australian Vanadium Has Near-Term Production In Sight As Vanadium Electrolyte Facility Plans Progress

Australian Vanadium Ltd (ASX:AVL) is marching ahead with plans to develop a commercial vanadium electrolyte manufacturing facility in Western Australia to support its strategy to become a vertically integrated ‘pit to battery’ vanadium producer.
A facility location has been secured, detailed design completed and long lead equipment ordered for the plant which will produce vanadium redox flow battery (VRFB) high-purity electrolyte.
Deliveries of the equipment are expected during the second quarter of 2023.
Proven technology
AVL will deploy proven US Vanadium LLC (USV) electrolyte manufacturing technology which will de-risk the construction and start-up of the plant which is planned to annually produce up to 33MWh of VRFB high-purity electrolyte.
The company, therefore, aims to be an early mover in the supply of this product to the growing Australian long-duration energy storage market in which VRFBs will play a key role.
CEO Graham Arvidson said, “AVL is pleased to have secured a site for the location of its first high-purity vanadium electrolyte manufacturing facility.
“With detailed design now complete and long lead equipment ordered, we are positioned to become a near-term producer.
“This is an important step in our journey to become a world-class, vertically integrated ‘pit to battery’ vanadium producer.”
Grant funds
The company has received an Australian Government grant of $3.69 million to co-fund commercial vanadium electrolyte facility development.
Part of this funding had been allocated to building and operating a commercial vanadium electrolyte manufacturing facility to support the commercialisation of VRFBs.
AVL holds the exclusive licence for Australia and New Zealand of USV’s process technology for manufacturing vanadium electrolyte.
This technology has been used for the design of the vanadium electrolyte manufacturing facility to be built within the northern Perth suburb of Wangara.
Partnering with WA-based engineering company Primero Group, a subsidiary of NRW Holdings, AVL has developed the facility design to comply with Australian standards and requirements.
Confident of realising goal
“By leveraging USV’s proven technology we have confidence in successfully realising our goal of producing the highest quality electrolyte available to the Australian and New Zealand VRFB markets,” Arvidson said.
“Through our wholly owned subsidiary VSUN Energy, we are positioned to play an integral role in an exciting pipeline of Australian decarbonisation-focused projects.
“Achieving near-term production of high-quality electrolyte positions AVL to be a supplier of choice for these projects.
“The company plans to explore opportunities to replicate this electrolyte facility on the east coast of Australia, to supply additional electrolyte for VRFB projects slated to be deployed in a variety of states and territories.”
What comes next?
Any statutory approvals required for the Wangara facility are being progressed while site preparation work is expected to begin next month in anticipation of the arrival and assembly of the electrolyte manufacturing equipment.
Until production of vanadium oxides from AVL’s Midwest Processing Hub commences, vanadium oxide feedstock for the electrolyte facility will be sourced through AVL’s agreement with USV.
The development and subsequent operation of this facility will provide AVL with the opportunity to incrementally mature its business processes, people and systems in project execution and operations.
Successfully constructing, commissioning and operating the facility will be an important step towards becoming an operating company and improving governance and risk management at a small scale prior to AVL’s flagship Australian Vanadium Project being developed.