News

Competition: Brinemine – extracting lithium & minerals from geothermal brine

Site of the Cerro Pabellon geothermal power plant, Chile (source: Enel Green Power)
Alexander Richter 3 Dec 2019

Enel has launched a competition valued at $30,000 seeking novel methods to economically extract lithium and other valuable minerals from brines produced in geothermal power plants.

Enel in Italy has launched BRINEMINE, a competition seeking novel methods to economically extract lithium and other valuable minerals from brines produced in geothermal power plants.

This is a Reduction-to-Practice Challenge that requires written documentation and experimental proof-of-concept data.

OVERVIEW

The global demand for lithium salts, the raw material for lithium-ion batteries, has increased significantly in recent years as a result of technological advancements in electronic devices and electric cars requiring high energy-density batteries. Traditional sources of lithium are quickly being depleted and alternative supplies must be explored. One potential source is the fluid used in geothermal power plants, known as geothermal brine, but extraction of lithium from such fluids has proven challenging due to several factors including the presence of other salts in the brine (that can be valuable as well). Enel is looking for novel methods and technologies to economically extract lithium and other valuable minerals.

This Challenge will be run in two phases. Enel will evaluate submissions to this first phase and choose the top Solvers to be invited to participate in the second phase. Solvers invited for the second phase will be required to sign and return a Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) as well as provide proof of identity in order to participate in phase 2 of the Challenge. The deadline for phase 1 is 11:59 PM (Central European Time) December 31, 2019. Detailed information regarding the deadline and additional requirements for phase 2 will be provided to the invited Solvers who return the requested documentation.

This Challenge provides contribution to the following Sustainable Development Goals:

  • SDG 6: Clean water and sanitation
  • SDG 9: Industry innovation and infrastructure
  • SDG 12: Responsible consumption and production
  • SDG 15: Life on land

Register now to start solving this Challenge! The full description challenge will be available to logged in users only. –

For questions about the challenge and your proposal you can contact EnelOpenInnovabilityChallenges@innocentive.com

For Challenge rules and further details see link below.

Deadline

Submissions to this Challenge must be received by 11:59 PM (Central European Time) on December 31, 2019.

Source: Enel