Limtech, Shawinigan, Quebec
Lithium Carbonate


Produces high-purity lithium carbonate that's used for manufacturing lithium ion battery cathodes, electrolyte salts, and semi-conductors. One important process step - drying the lithium carbonate - proved to be a chal-lenge when the producer decided to move from pilot to full-scale production. The producer found that its spin flash dryer was inefficient, introduced contaminants, and couldn't dry the material to spec at higher production rates. Through print advertisements and the Internet, the firm learned of Wyssmont's K-20 TURBO-DRYER®, a continuous rotating tray dryer. Limtech sent the equipment supplier 10 pounds of wet-cake lithium carbonate for testing. The dryer was shipped assembled to Limtech's new plant in late March 2000. The dryer operates at 400°F. The dryer's installation was easy, and within 1 week the dryer was operating. Material enters the continuous rotating tray dryer with 7 to 20 percent moisture and discharges with less then 0.01 percent moisture. Since installing the dryer in its full-scale lithium carbonate process, the dryer has consistently dried the wet-cake lithium carbonate well below the producer's initial requirements while maintaining the material's particle size. The producer has also seen a substantial decrease in its dryer operation costs. "Our energy consumption is around one-tenth of what it used to be per kilogram of material processed." And because of the dryer's low airflow requirements, the producer no longer worries about material contamination during drying.


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