Home » Jupiter Mines Innovates with High-Purity Manganese for EV Batteries

Jupiter Mines Innovates with High-Purity Manganese for EV Batteries

Jupiter Mines, MMC Lead Advancements in Manganese for EV Battery Innovation

by Adenike Adeodun

Jupiter Mines, a leading manganese mining firm, has achieved a significant milestone by producing a 99.9% pure high-purity manganese sulphate monohydrate (HPMSM) sample. This breakthrough, achieved using the Northern Cape’s manganese ore, was developed through an innovative hydrometallurgical production process.

The integration of battery-grade manganese into electric vehicle batteries promises enhanced energy density and improved safety, as highlighted by Jupiter in its media release to Mining Weekly. This development follows the steps of Manganese Metal Co (MMC), chaired by the South African mining luminary Bernard Swanepoel.

As detailed in a report by Engineering News & Mining Weekly, MMC is constructing a small-scale commercial HPMSM plant in Mbombela (Nelspruit), set to produce by 2026. This facility will augment MMC’s existing high-purity electrolytic manganese metal refinery.

Jupiter’s media release to Mining Weekly emphasizes that it is the first South African manganese miner to produce HPMSM using its proprietary process. The product meets the International Manganese Institute’s battery-grade quality specifications.

“We’re encouraged by our HPMSM production process and the progress in our business development,” said Jupiter MD Brad Rogers. “We aim to bring distinctive value to our downstream strategy and secure attractive returns.”

Next year, MMC will mark half a century of producing the world’s purest manganese EMM metal, sourced from the Kalahari. Customers have been using MMC’s high-purity manganese metal to create HPMSM, inspiring MMC to venture into HPMSM production. The upcoming 5,000 t/y plant will significantly enhance MMC’s role in the battery-grade manganese market.

Jupiter is conducting studies to identify the ideal location for its first plant, with the US or Canada as the primary options and Europe as an alternative. The decision will be based on various criteria, including the proximity of potential offtake partners.

MMC’s green energy initiatives include utilizing clean hydropower and introducing a circular beneficiation model to support local communities. The company’s vision aligns with the objectives of the South African Renewable Energy Masterplan.

While Jupiter primarily serves the steel industry, investing in HPMSM production will allow market diversification and minimize product risk. Jupiter plans to build and operate an HPMSM conversion facility, with equity investment and co-investment from external sources.

With a history of exporting high-quality manganese metal, MMC has significantly contributed to South Africa’s export revenue and tax income. Trade & Industrial Policy Strategies (TIPS) senior economist Gaylor Montmasson-Clair hails MMC as a unique industrial entity poised for growth, underscoring its importance in South Africa’s renewable energy and battery storage industries.

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