Valmet DNA automation system chosen for Sibanye-Stillwater’s Keliber lithium project concentrator in Kaustinen, Finland

Valmet Oyj’s trade press release on March 28, 2024 at 9:30 a.m. EET

Valmet will deliver and implement a Valmet DNA automation system to the concentrator of Sibanye-Stillwater’s Keliber lithium project.

The order was included in Valmet’s orders received of the fourth quarter 2023. The value of the order will not be disclosed. The delivery is planned for August 2025 and the final acceptance for July 2026.

Sibanye-Stillwater’s Keliber lithium project intends to produce battery-grade lithium hydroxide from its own mined ore reserves. The project consists of future mines, the concentrator in Kaustinen and a lithium refinery in Kokkola. Construction is ongoing at both plant sites.

Valmet DNA automation system was also chosen for the Keliber lithium refinery and is planned to be installed this spring. The comprehensive system offers reliability through redundancy.

“We are delighted that Sibanye-Stillwater has placed their confidence in us once again by selecting Valmet DNA as their primary automation system for their Keliber lithium project concentrator as well. Using the same systems for multiple sites allows automation engineers and maintenance staff to handle the system with a lot more ease and efficiency. The field of battery chemicals presents a fascinating area for process development with immense potential looking to the future,” says Arto Mäkinen, Sales Manager, Automation Systems, Valmet.

“I am pleased that we have again partnered with Valmet for the automation of the concentrator and am sure that the process will be smooth. Our future integrated production from mining to refining will be unique in Europe and play a big role in the self-sufficiency of lithium supply for the battery industry in the region,” says Hannu Hautala, SVP, Keliber lithium project.

Image by Sweco Finland

Technical information of the delivery

Valmet will provide a total process control system for the concentrator including Valmet DNA User Interface, tailored with Valmet User Experience Design Service.

Valmet will provide a virtualized solution for Windows workstation, as well as Valmet DNA Condition Monitoring, a Valmet DNA Field Device Manager, Valmet DNA historian, an application simulation system and a training simulator interface. The delivery contains a Valmet DNA DCS solution with built-in cybersecurity, including Valmet hardware and Profinet fieldbuses.

To ensure proper running of the operations, user training is included in the project scope.

About the customer Sibanye-Stillwater’s Keliber lithium project

The Keliber lithium project is located in Kaustinen and Kokkola, Finland, where they are currently building a concentrator and a lithium refinery. With this project, they are aiming to be the first European producer of battery-grade lithium hydroxide from its own mined ore reserves, and to supply the region's battery industry with a critical raw material that is necessary to produce electric vehicles.  

The Keliber lithium project is owned by Sibanye-Stillwater (79.8%), a multinational mining and metals processing Group, and Finnish Minerals Group (20%), a state-owned company developing the value chain of lithium-ion batteries in Finland.  

Corporate Communications

For further information, please contact:
Juha-Pekka Jalkanen, Director Process Automation, Automation Systems, Valmet, tel. +358 50 344 7464

Valmet is a leading global developer and supplier of process technologies, automation and services for the pulp, paper and energy industries. With our automation systems and flow control solutions we serve an even wider base of process industries. Our more than 19,000 professionals around the world work close to our customers and are committed to moving our customers’ performance forward – every day. 

The company has over 220 years of industrial history and a strong track record in continuous improvement and renewal. Valmet’s net sales in 2023 were approximately EUR 5.5 billion. 

Valmet’s shares are listed on the Nasdaq Helsinki and the head office is in Espoo, Finland.     

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