Protean Energy – Vertically Integrated Vanadium

Date: Oct 30, 2018

Protean Energy’s strategy is to build a vertically integrated¬†vanadium¬†business, with the upstream including the 490 Mlb V2O5/18.4 Mlb U3O8 Daejon Vanadium-Uranium Deposit in South Korea, and with downstream activities concentrating on the commercialisation of the proprietary V-KOR vanadium redox flow battery stack technology and the development of a high energy density VRFB electrolyte – the VFRB activities are targeted at producing a relatively low cost, high energy transfer product.

Protean holds, through subsidiary KORID Energy, 60% of the proprietary V-KOR technology and the electrolyte process, and through Stonehenge Korea, 50% of Daejon. In both cases the partner in the subsidiary companies is KOSDAQ listed DST Company Ltd (formerly KORID Inc).

The VRFB technology is proceeding towards commercialisation, with a field trial currently underway in Western Australia testing a 25kW/100kWh V-KOR battery stack. The first stage of the trial included the integration of the battery into a micro-grid and was successfully concluded. The second stage, which is currently underway, includes the integration into the Western Power grid, with results due for release later this year.

Also on the battery front, the V-KOR battery stack has been chosen over a number of competitors to be used in a three year, ~A$10 million, 1MW/4MWh battery trial in South Korea, that will include funding of ~A$3 million over three years to KORID Energy.

To round out the battery side, V-KOR has announced that it has successfully developed a new generation V2O5 electrolyte, with an improvement in energy density of up to 25%. Given the cost of electrolytes, energy density is a key factor in decreasing battery costs, as well as decreasing battery footprints due to the need for smaller electrolyte tanks. The complements the targeted relatively low cost battery stacks.

The Daejon deposit, with its significant contained vanadium and uranium, is potentially a strategic asset, with the resources that have the potential to supply a significant part of Korea’s annual vanadium and uranium needs, all of which are currently imported. Having recently updated the resource to 76 Mt @ 3,000ppm V2O5 and 110 ppm U3O8, the Company is now concentrating on metallurgical test work.

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