Maricunga (Blanco) Project

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Mine TypeIn-Situ
  • Lithium
  • Potassium
Mining Method
  • Solution mining
Mine Life... Lock
SnapshotMSB received its environmental approval (RCA) for the Maricunga Project on February 4, 2020. The Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) was submitted to the Chilean Authority, Servicio de Evaluacion Ambiental (SEA), in September 2018.

The EIA approval represents the final major regulatory milestone in advancing the Project, which is now ready to move towards construction subject to completion of Project Financing.

An updated Definitive Feasibility Study (DFS) is due for release in mid-January 2022.


Lithium Power International Ltd. 100 % Indirect
The Maricunga (Blanco) project is 100% owned by Lithium Power International Limited (“LPI” or the “Company”).

In October 2023, LPI entered into a binding scheme implementation deed with Chilean mining company Codelco, pursuant to which it is proposed that a wholly-owned subsidiary of Codelco will acquire 100 percent of the share capital of LPI by way of a Scheme of Arrangement. Implementation Date: Thursday, 14 March 2024.

Deposit type

  • Evaporite


Based on the drilling campaigns carried out in the Salar between 2011 and 2021, eight major geological units were identified and correlated from the logging of drill cuttings and undisturbed core to a general depth of up to 400 m. Only borehole S-29 on the western edge of the Salar encountered bedrock at 219 m depth. Salar de Maricunga is a mixed style salar. An upper halite unit occurs (up to 34 m in thickness) in the central northern part of the Salar and hosts the upper brine aquifer. The halite unit is underlain by low permeability lacustrine sediments. The Salar is surrounded by relative coarse grained alluvial and fluvial sediments. These fans demark the perimeter of the actual salar and at depth grade towards the centre of the Salar where they form the distal facies with an increase in sand and silt. At depth two unconsolidated volcanoclastic units have been identified that appear quite similar. These two volcanoclastic units are separated by a relatively thin and continuous sand unit which may be reworked material of the lower volcanoclastic unit. A volcanic breccia was identified on the northern and western parts of the OCC that locally interfingers with the lower volcanoclastic unit. A lower brine aquifer is hosted in the lower alluvial, volcanoclastic, and volcanic breccia units (below the lacustrine sediments).

The brines from Maricunga are solutions nearly saturated in sodium chloride with an average concentration of total dissolved solids (TDS) of 311 g/L. The average density is 1.20 g/cm3. Other components present in the Maricunga brine are: K, Li, Mg, Ca, SO4, HCO3 and B. Elevated values of strontium (mean of 359 mg/L) also have been detected.



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Mining Methods


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Crushers and Mills

Milling equipment has not been reported.



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CommodityUnitsAvg. AnnualLOM
All production numbers are expressed as carbonate.

Operational metrics

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Brine extraction, LOM  ....  Subscribe
* According to 2022 study.

Production Costs

Cash costs Li2CO3 USD  ....  Subscribe
Assumed price Li2CO3 USD  ....  Subscribe
* According to 2022 study / presentation.

Project Costs

MetricsUnitsLOM Total
Sustaining CapEx $M USD  ......  Subscribe
Total CapEx $M USD  ......  Subscribe
Processing OpEx $M USD 58.7
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Pre-tax NPV @ 8% $M USD  ......  Subscribe
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After-tax NPV @ 8% $M USD  ......  Subscribe
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Heavy Mobile Equipment

Fleet data has not been reported.


Mine Management

Job TitleNameProfileRef. Date
....................... Subscription required ....................... Subscription required Subscription required Feb 19, 2024


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