The success of the LiCORNE project is founded on the collaborative work between 16 partners covering the entire European battery value chain. The partners involved will work in partnership on different tasks, from the optimisation and development of technologies, to the communication, dissemination and exploitation of results.


Tecnalia Research & Innovation (TEC)

TECNALIA is a private, independent, non-profit applied research centre of international excellence and member of the Basque Research and Technology Alliance (BRTA). Legally a Foundation, TECNALIA is the leading private and independent research and technology organisation in Spain (over 777 patents and promoted more than 30 spin-off companies, participates in 352 H2020 projects, coordinating 73 of them, and in 35 HORIZON EUROPE projects under negotiation, coordinating 6 of them) and one of the largest in Europe, employing around 1472 people (266 PhDs) and with income of 113.5 Million € in 2020.

We collaborate with companies and institutions to improve their competitiveness, people’s quality of life and achieve sustainable growth. Our main areas of action are fully aligned with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs): smart manufacturing, digital transformation, energy transition, sustainable mobility, personalised health and urban ecosystem.

Main tasks and responsibilities in the project:  TECNALIA is the project coordinator and, therefore, leads WP1- Project Management. TECNALIA is also the leader of WP8, devoted to environmental and economic sustainability assessment of the processes developed. Besides, TECNALIA will be responsible for several R&D tasks in WP2 to WP7, for the development of technologies (such as solvometallurgy and organic based membrane electrolysis) for the Li valorisation from selected feedstock materials. Furthermore, TECNALIA will participate and support in the Communication, Dissemination and Exploitation activities planned within WP9.


European Lithium Ltd. is a mineral exploration and development company headquartered in Australia. European Lithium is focusing on its wholly owned Wolfsberg Lithium Project in Austria. In Austria, the company is represented by ECM Lithium AT GmbH.

Main tasks and responsibilities in the project: European Lithium will provide various spodumene products to project participants. It includes both calcined and non – calcined spodumene concentrate, spodumene ore and, where appropriate, by – products.


 EnBW is one of the largest energy supply companies in Germany and Europe with a workforce of more than 25,000 employees and supplies electricity, gas, water and energy solutions and energy industry services to around 5.5 million customers.

Main tasks and responsibilities in the project:
-The supply of geothermal brine feedstock 

-Research and development of the Li+ desorption technology (to TRL4) to make a sustainable Li+ extraction and separation from geothermal and continental brines based on at min. 90% yield.

ÉS-Géothermie (ÉS-G)

ÉS-Géothermie is a subsidiary of the ÉS (Électricité de Strasbourg) Group, part of EDF. ÉS-G main mission is to provide an expertise for deep geothermal energy Enhanced Geothermal System (EGS) for producing heat or power from geothermal brines.

Main tasks and responsibilities in the project: 

Within the LiCORNE project, ES-G is leading WP2 – Supply and characterisation of feedstock, and is involved equally  in additional activities, such as ‘Separation and purification of Li from solutions’, ‘Operation and validation of the LiCORNE processes (TRL5)’, ‘Communication, Dissemination and Exploitation’ etc.


VITO (Flemish Institute for Technological Research), is a leading European independent research and consultancy center in the areas of cleantech and sustainable development, elaborating solutions for the large societal challenges of today. Sustainable chemistry, energy, health, materials management and land use: these are the five topics VITO focuses on. These topics have been set out in five research programs. They offer an answer to the challenges that mankind and society are confronted with today and in the future. Each program builds up a strong base of knowledge and skill, with added value for industry and society. The result is new and innovative research and a comprehensive range of scientific services.

Main tasks and responsibilities in the project:

VITO will develop two novel technologies to separate an recover Li from different streams.  The two technologies being structured sorbent materials (Li-ion sieves) for the separation and gas diffusion electro crystallisation (GDEx) for the recovery. Both technologies will be developed, optimised and validated at lab scale (TR-L 4) in WP5 and WP6 respectively.


SINTEF is a broad, multidisciplinary, not-for -profit research organisation with international top-level expertise in the fields of technology, natural sciences, medicine, and social sciences. We conduct contract R&D as a partner for the private and public sectors, and we are one of the largest contract research institutions in Europe with 2200 employees.

Main tasks and responsibilities in the project:

SINTEF is leading the activities in WP6 ” Recovery as battery-grade chemicals”.  Furthermore, SINTEF is developing innovative methods to a) recover Li, Co and Ni directly from Li ores and off spec cathode materials, and b) produce LiOH·H2O from Li containing solutions, generated upstream from Li ores by other partners (VITO).


Fraunhofer Gesellschaft zur Förderung der angewandten Forschung e.V.

We currently have about 580 employees, who carry out research and development in our core competences of chemical processes, energy systems, explosive technology, drive systems, polymer technology and composite materials.

We focus on the scalability of processes and the transfer of research results from laboratory scale to pilot plant scale and in some cases to pilot-level application.

The research group “Batteries” in the Department of Applied Electrochemistry is working on development and characterization of lithium and sodium ion battery systems, solid-state batteries and battery safety tests (on cell and modular level).

Main tasks and responsibilities in the project:

Fraunhofer ICT will work on the production of lithium hydroxide from solutions derived from the upstream process of geothermal and continental brines from our Partners EnBW and KIT.

Laboratory of Metallurgy (LabMet) of the School of Mining and Metallurgical Engineering (National Technical University of Athens) (NTUA) 

LabMet has gained considerable expertise and international reputation in the last 30 years in research and development in various fields, like: extractive metallurgy, rehabilitation of sites polluted from mining and metallurgical activities, thermodynamic studies of metallurgical systems, mathematical modelling, simulation of metallurgical and environmental protection processes, synthesis of added value materials from mining and metallurgical wastes, networking in the areas of mining, ornamental stones and processing. In the last 10 years alone, the LabMet has been involved in more than 40 National and European research projects, attracting in total more than 15 Μ€ in funding and producing more the 400 scientific publications in international journals and international scientific conferences.

Main tasks and responsibilities in the project:
Leader in:

  • WP3. Beneficiation of ore and physico-chemical transformation of concentrates

Task 4.1. Alkaline leaching of spodumene concentrate, hectorite and jadarite material and tailings.

Delft University of Technology/Technische Universiteit Delft DELFT (TUD)

TU Delft’s mission is to make a significant contribution to a sustainable society for the 21st century using several routes:

  • By conducting groundbreaking scientific and technological research – acknowledged as world-class;
  • By training scientists and engineers with a genuine commitment to society;
  • By helping translate knowledge into technological innovations and activities with economic and social value.

Main tasks and responsibilities in the project: TU Delft’s main responsibility within the LiCORNE project is to optimise an Opto-Magnetically-induced sorting technology producing high-grade spodumene concentrates in the beneficiation circuit.


At IAM-ESS, we develop and investigate energy storage materials for applications in lithium-ion and post-lithium batteries. Our institute covers the entire value chain from the synthesis and analysis of novel materials to the manufacturing of electrode coatings and large(r) scale cells, including operando and post-mortem analysis to investigate material fatigue and battery lifetime.

For us, battery recycling does not start at the end of the first battery life but with energy-efficient material synthesis and a deliberate choice of raw materials. In order to enable diversified, circular (raw) material streams in the future battery economy, design-for-recycling has to be integrated into each step along the manufacturing process, and novel recycling methods need to be developed to drive efficient raw material recovery.

Main tasks and responsibilities in the project: IAM-ESS contributed to two topics to the activities of LiCORNE: Means to selective electrochemical Li-extraction from geothermal brines and Li-recovery from spent batteries by reactive ball milling.

Advanced Minerals & Recycling Industrial Solutions P.C. (AdMiRIS) (ADM)

Established in 2015, AdMiRIS is a growing engineering and consulting company, based in Athens, Greece and active worldwide.

Main tasks and responsibilities in the project: Within the LiCORNE project, ADMIRIS is responsible with designing and proposing a sound business model.


PNO Innovation Belgium is specialised in Innovation Management and funding, providing support services to private and public organizations in Innovation processes, Technology Transfer, IT solutions and funding for research, development and innovation.


Main tasks and responsibilities in the project: PNO will lead Communication, Dissemination and Exploitation activities and will bring its international consulting experience into the consortium including extensive project and innovation management, exploitation and business planning expertise. A particular focus will be given to value chain stakeholders analysis, to identify and engage relevant stakeholders for further exploitation activities, as well as market and business analysis to support the consortium into bringing the Key Exploitable Results closer to the market.

Umicore is a leading circular materials technology company with an extensive expertise in the fields of material science, chemistry and metallurgy.

Main tasks and responsibilities in the project: Umicore will provide off-specification cathode material that will be utilized in the development of separation/ purification processes for Li, Co and Ni.

Imerys is a World’s leading supplier of mineral-based specialty solutions, offering high value-added solutions to many different industries, ranging from process manufacturing to consumer goods.

Main tasks and responsibilities in the project: During the project’s lifetime, Imerys will provide hard rock minerals samples containing Lithium from its own operations, and participate in consortium R&D studies in Lithium hydroxide recovery.

SQM is a Chilean mining company and one of the largest lithium producers in the world. We meet the highest national and international standards in our operations and due to our natural brine-based production process in northern Chile, we have one of the lowest carbon, energy and water footprints on the market. Nitrates and potash for fertilizer industry, solar salts, among others, are also part of SQM’s chemical compounds portfolio.

Main tasks and responsibilities in the project: To provide continental brine samples and chemical analysis capacity to check quality of final produced Li-compounds | 


LevertonHELM is a Lithium chemicals producer based in the UK and founded in 1977. LevertonHELM is focused on the manufacturing of a wide range of inorganic Lithium chemicals with operations located in Basingstoke, UK. Next to that, the company is investing in setting up a large-scale refining plant for the production of battery grade Lithium products in Europe. Further on, LevertonHELM intends to participate in the Lithium supply chain by offering recycling solutions and toll manufacturing services for Lithium conversion and refining. The company’s senior management has a vast experience within the global Lithium industry.

Main tasks and responsibilities in the project: 

LevertonHELM will prepare a synthetic Li brine-like solution that will be supplied to our project partners.

We will Benchmark and qualify the Lithium, produced by the LiCORNE process, as battery grade material.

LevertonHELM will determine if the produced Lithium meets the specifications to be market-ready and can be used as such as raw material for cathode manufacturing.

In case the product doesn’t meet the specifications for cathode manufacturing, LevertonHELM will provide feedback towards optimization which could include extra purification steps at its facilities.