By MINING.com – Sep 26, 2020, 4: 00 PM CDT
All the draw by strategy of Tuesday’s powerful-hyped battery day, Tesla CEO Elon Musk laid out plans to position all americans at the succor of the wheel (or is that drowsing within the succor) of a $25,000 automobile that drives itself.
Worthy of the three-hour-plus presentation used to be low on factor, high on promotion, and stratospheric on ambition, (it’s ever thus) however Tesla’s plans to start up mining looked in particular simplistic.
With mountainous fanfare and 40 years after Chevron’s Thacker Pass, Tesla announced to the world – and to a car car parking zone – that there had been basic untapped lithium reserves in Nevada clay.
Tesla acknowledged they secured the rights to 10,000 acres within the Silver Enlighten however if their manufacturing unit used to be in Hawaii they doubtlessly would’ve mined there, as a result of as Musk told the autos assembled in entrance of the stage “it’s elegant powerful in all areas”:
“There might perhaps be de facto so powerful damn lithium on earth it’s loopy. It’s one in every of the most total parts on the planet.”
Yes. It’s a ways loopy.
Lithium. Now extensively accessible
Musk went on to brand there is sufficient lithium within the united states to seriously change the total automobile quick within the US to electrical.
Musk used to be later corrected by his SVP on stage that in actual fact the lithium in Nevada on my own is ample to impress the 300 million US automobile parc.
Furthermore, that’s lithium already been “stumbled on this day” to which Musk appended:
“Folks haven’t even been making an try. It’s ethical love extensively accessible.”
There are 63kgs of lithium carbonate in a Tesla 70kWh battery. So that’s 18.9 million tonnes if all americans desires to alternate in their clunker for a Mannequin Y.
World lithium carbonate linked manufacturing final One year used to be 365,000 tonnes, an amplify of 32% from the One year sooner than.
Accurate 32%? Clearly, the lithium mining alternate merely hasn’t even been making an try.
Musk solves now not easy complications from a “first precept standpoint” which he incessantly referred to on stage.
Invented by Aristotle and evidently perfected by Musk, this trend principally says ignore how things have continuously been performed. Mediate similar to you’re the basic one shopping for answers to solve a explicit field.
The request, in line with Musk:
“What’s the smartest components to procure the ore and extract the lithium and invent so in an environmentally-pleasant components?”
The answer, in line with Musk:
“What we’ve stumbled on is we are in a position to in actual fact exercise table salt to extract the lithium from the ore. No person’s performed this sooner than. All the parts are reusable. It’s a extraordinarily sustainable components of acquiring lithium.”
Add table salt. Add water. A recipe for lithium mining. With extraction solved, how about tailings?
Yet again, first precept pondering will present the answer:
“The character of the mining will be very environmentally excellent-wanting in that we sorta procure a little bit of dirt out of the floor, procure away the lithium, and achieve the chunk of dirt succor where it used to be.
“This might perhaps watch elegant powerful the same as sooner than. This might perhaps now not watch, love, dreadful. This might perhaps additionally be nice.“
Cobalt hardly ever obtained a level out within the session, other than within the bit about how a cathode is love a bookshelf with cobalt being the “stable” share of acknowledged bookshelf.
If they in actual fact wished to position it into layman’s terms they’ll also ethical have acknowledged cobalt stops our autos from bursting into flames.
“Leveraging new coatings and dopants,” Tesla says it has now successfully eliminated cobalt altogether, which is never the basic time Musk has leveraged dopants either.
Did Tesla be a half of the Congo artisanal cobalt make stronger neighborhood this month? Yes. Why? No reason.
Did Tesla trace a lengthy speed present agreement with Glencore for cobalt from the Congo in June. Yes. Why? No reason.
Out comes the battery
With lithium mining sorted, cobalt long previous and graphite modified by “superior and low-fee” sand (it’s now not called Silicon Valley for nothing), Musk moved onto nickel.
Tesla will need the satan’s copper in spades (in spades, now not in HPAL) as it motors in direction of nickel smartly off batteries and annual manufacturing of 20 million autos a One year.
Mediate 20m is too formidable? You would like now not be using first precept pondering as a result of all you undoubtedly want to invent is achieve away with “legacy things” love metal sulfates from the components.
Laying aside this “insane” step – which “ethical took place to be what chemists wished a lengthy time within the past” – you quit up with this:
“It would ethical be, principally, raw materials coming from the mine and from raw materials from the mine out comes the battery. ”
Even so, Musk worries that Tesla won’t be ready to scale and “we must make positive we’re now not constrained by nickel availability”:
“I in actual fact spoke to the CEOs of the very finest mining firms within the world and told them please earn extra nickel. It’s a ways terribly necessary. I contemplate they’re going to earn extra nickel.”
You’re right, Elon, miners are making extra nickel as I write this.
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