If, for instance, we do not conduct research, then we will indirectly lag behind technologically.
Jakarta (ANTARA) - Research and exploration of lithium need to be undertaken to support the development and production of batteries for domestic electric vehicles, a researcher from the National Research and Innovation Agency's (BRIN's) Metallurgical Research Center has said.

"The demand for lithium until 2030 and beyond will continue to rise. The question is whether Indonesia is capable of producing lithium," researcher Latifa Hanum Lalasari noted during an online workshop on Indonesian lithium on Friday.

"This is what we need to explore and research together," she said.

Globally, the consumption of lithium has continued to rise given that, in 2022, the development of electric vehicles has necessitated the production of batteries, and the main raw material for batteries is lithium, she added.

In view of this, research and exploration of lithium raw material sources have become important.

"If, for instance, we do not conduct research, then we will indirectly lag behind technologically," she explained.

In nature, lithium is found in various concentrations in seawater, pegmatite, oil field brine, geothermal brine, and sedimentary rock (Li-rich clay).

Lithium raw material sources can be explored from primary resources, such as seawater and sea stone, and secondary resources, such as used batteries and mining process results.

One of the approaches to lithium extraction from primary resources that can be adopted in the future is extracting lithium from seawater or geothermal brine, Lalasari said.

Research and innovation must seek to resolve one of the national issues related to the provision of battery raw materials from local resources to support the development of national electric cars, she added.

To this end, the effort to explore and determine the availability of lithium and other mineral raw material sources in Indonesia necessitates collaboration between scientific branches and all parties, including universities.

Data on the availability of lithium raw material sources are useful for supporting lithium processing by considering its potential and availability in Indonesia.

In addition, research and development activities aim to develop lithium processing technology, she noted.

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Translator: Martha H S, Fadhli Ruhman
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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