The agreements mark a significant step towards the company’s long-term goal of establishing a TIVAN+ Processing Facility for mineral concentrate processing from Tivan’s Speewah Vanadium-Titanium-Iron Project.
According to the company, the collaboration represents successfully reshoring a critical technology for Tivan in Australia, leveraging advanced research and development in a strategic national interest sector. It also presents an opportunity to contribute to the global vanadium industry by creating sustainable supply chains with international partners. Additionally, Tivan noted that the collaboration creates employment and business opportunities in regional and Traditional Owner communities, and design and deploy a sovereign capability for a large-scale renewable energy value chain based on sustainable circularity principles.
“In March the Board of Tivan made the decision to integrate many years of research and development of the TIVAN® critical minerals processing technology with independent technological advances that the Mineral Resources team at CSIRO had achieved. Over the subsequent period Tivan and CSIRO have been working together in close collaboration, rapidly advancing the resulting TIVAN+ technology pathway,” Tivan Executive Chairman Grant Wilson said.
“On behalf of the Board, I extend sincere thanks to the team at CSIRO for their collegiate ethos and goodwill throughout this journey. I am confident that our partnership will endure, and will come to exemplify how research and industry can work together in mission-driven science that addresses Australia’s greatest challenges,” he noted.
The RSA formalised the collaboration between CSIRO and Tivan on TIVAN+ technology development, which began in April. It details the agreed pathway for technology development and optimisation, including workstreams, testwork programs, and the contributions of both parties.
The RSA-implemented technology, captured under the TLA, will be utilised in the planned TIVAN+ Pilot Plant, requiring demonstration at a pilot plant scale to reduce project risk and ensure technical validation for project financing.
The timeline for TIVAN+ has been modified to allow more time for technology development for Speewah, focusing on a salt roast technology pathway. The current testwork program is expected to continue until May 2024, followed by a process engineering scope to translate findings into process documents for the new evolved technology.
The engineered process will guide the remaining testwork required for the engineering and implementation of a TIVAN+ Pilot Plant.
Meanwhile, the TLA is a significant step towards the Board’s long-term goal of delivering a TIVAN+ Processing Facility for the Speewah Project. The TIVAN+ process route offers a diversified product mix, revenue streams, cost optimisation opportunities, and reduced environmental impacts. It also offers the potential to produce an intermediate titanium ilmenite feedstock of commercial value. The initial salt roast pathway workstreams at Speewah are shared with the TIVAN+ pathway, providing synergies and optionality.
The TLA grants Tivan an exclusive, non-transferable 20-year licence to use CSIRO’s VTM intellectual property, patents, know-how, and any further modifications thereto for vanadium recovery, which will serve as the foundation for TIVAN+ technology.
“This is a really important partnership that will see the development and commercialisation of cutting-edge, CSIRO-patented technology increasingly used in the production of renewable energy storage systems,” CSIRO Chief Executive Dr Doug Hilton said.
Dr Hilton noted that the technology is crucial for Australia’s renewable energy future, providing long-term community benefits, boosting the economy, and creating more jobs and opportunities for Australians.
“This is an important, innovative work, creating new sovereign capability that harnesses the critical technologies Australia needs to transition to net zero,” he added.