Recent advances in nanomaterial development for lithium ion-sieving technologies
The demand for lithium has increased incredibly during the last decade as it has become the mainstream for the growth of industrial products; especially batteries for electric vehicles and electronic devices. Given the high demand for lithium, researchers are focusing on methods for extracting lithium from a variety of sources. Among different liquid lithium extraction methods, lithium ion-sieve technology (LIS) is an emerging recovery method with great advantages over other approaches. LIS adsorption is a promising method for Li extraction owing to its low energy consumption, high lithium uptake capacity, environmentally friendly nature and superior lithium selectivity properties. A variety of physical and chemical methods can be applied to extract lithium from brines and ores. The present work critically reviews recent developments in lithium extraction and recovery using LIS adsorbents and membranes from aqueous solutions such as brine, seawater, etc. The paper has been particularly categorized based on the structure of the adsorbents and the pros and cons of various LIS adsorbents. Furthermore, this work emphasizes recent achievements with regard to the stability challenges encountered with LIS adsorbents. The favorable progress along with comparable advantageous such as higher lithium selectivity, lower environmental challenges, and higher energy efficiency have made LIS one of the most promising methods for lithium extraction from aqueous media.