Water & Wastewater Asia Mar/Apr 2018

WATER & WASTEWATER ASIA March / April 2018 36 / INSIGHT MGX Minerals and its partner, PurLucid Treatment Solutions, are revolutionising the wastewater industry with their patented technology. Water and Wastewater Asia caught up with Jared Lazerson, CEO of MGX Minerals to find out how the technology works and its potential. A developer of lithium, magnesium and silicon projects, MGX Minerals is well known for using innovative processes to supply the new energy economy. Its patented and Katerva Award- nominated technology is able to successfully extract lithium from heavy oil wastewater. The first of its kind, the technology is able to reduce production time of lithium from brine by 99 per cent as compared to conventional lithium brine production times, which uses solar evaporation. Heavy oil evaporator blowdown wastewater (EBD) is one of the byproducts of steam assisted gravity drainage during production of heavy oil, it was specifically targeted as the wastewater contains mid-level concentrations of lithium and has the potential to generate high environmental revenue based on current disposal costs. Together, MGX Minerals and its partner, PurLucid Treatment Solutions (PurLucid), are working to integrate their respective technologies and develop a plant suitable for commercial use that will treat EBD to provide oil sand producers with additional environmentally-friendly disposal options as well as recover valuable minerals such as lithium. The partnership “Within this fairly diversified advanced materials commodities and technical processes, one of the companies we have invested in, and now almost 50 per cent of, is a water treatment company,” said Jared Lazerson, CEO of MGX Minerals. In 2016, MGX Minerals acquired PurLucid in an initial 50 per cent interest in exchange for C$5 million staged investment over two years and the right to acquire a 100 per cent interest for an additional investment of C$10 million. Lazerson said, “These guys have a very interesting low-cost technology that allows us to deal with brine and then process it using our process for extracting minerals, lithium in particular.” PurLucid specialises in the treatment of industrial fluids. The company is deeply rooted in the energy sector with experience in heavy oil, mining forestry and industrial waste treatment with their proprietary technology. The system utilises a highly charged Replaceable Skin Layer (RSL™) membrane and High Intensity Froth Flotation (HiFF) Jared Lazerson (left) speaking at a lithium panel in Vancouver, Canada