May 17, 2020

Iran's First Nuclear Power Plant Comes Online

4 min
Despite fears from the West, Iran has successfully brought its first nuclear reactor, the Bushehr nuclear power plant, online
In spite of the Western mainstream medias continual provocation of the idea that theres a looming war with Iran over its nuclear energy program, the co...

In spite of the Western mainstream media’s continual provocation of the idea that there’s a looming war with Iran over its nuclear energy program, the country has gone ahead and brought its first nuclear reactor online.  The Bushehr nuclear power plant started feeding energy into the Iranian power grid on September 12, 2011.  The 1,000 megawatt plant is generating electricity at only 40 percent of its total capacity, but will reach full capacity by the end of the year pending further tests. 

It was not so long ago that former U.S. president George W. Bush condemned Iran as a part of the “Axis of Evil,” a term that should frankly have never been coined and used so liberally in political discourse.  Iran’s pursuit of a peaceful civilian nuclear energy program is compliant under the terms of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), to which Iran is a signatory.  The country has also been forthcoming with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) in allowing inspectors to comb the nuclear facilities for safety hazards and weapons threats.  The IAEA has reported that no evidence of weapons development is apparent at the facilities.

In 1995, Russia signed a $1 billion contract for the development of the Bushehr nuclear plant.  Last month the country supplied the enriched uranium fuel necessary to start the reactor.  The U.S. urged Russia not to provide the fuel until the country proved it was not developing nuclear weapons; however, Moscow cited Iran’s compliance with the IAEA as all the proof they needed to support the country’s nuclear ambitions.


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Iran has signed a pledge to ship all spent nuclear fuel back to Russia for reprocessing, further reducing the chances of it being used to make nuclear weapons. 

So does the world, particularly the U.S. and Israel, have anything to really fear?  Sure, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has stated in the past that Israel has no right to exist and should be “wiped off the map,” which may lead the country to suspect an imminent attack.  However, the now infamous quote alludes to the fact that Israel was established post WWII under what were at the time illegal pretences under international law.  Ahmadinejad even explained this in a candid interview with Larry King in 2008.  Furthermore, Israel’s own nuclear program was developed in secrecy, against international law, in the 1950s and 1960s.  Israel’s Dimona reactor was brought online by deceiving the IAEA, a fact revealed by Israeli whistleblower Mordechai Vanunu in 1986.  For leaking the information to the U.K.’s Sunday Times, Vanunu was kidnapped by Israeli forces, sent back to Israel, charged with treason and espionage, and served an 18-year prison sentence. 

The reason this should all be of concern is because Western media has been shoving the idea of a war with Iran down our throats for the last several years now.  And why?  The country is being as forthcoming and compliant as international law requires and is fully entitled under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty to pursue peaceful civilian nuclear energy.  On the other hand, the United States has broken several international laws and agreements in its actions in both Iraq and Afghanistan, and the NATO-led strike in Libya is a complete farce when examining international laws on how to properly address a civilian-headed regime change.  Essentially, something fishy is going on, and unfortunately I fear that the opening of this nuclear power plant will only fuel a U.S.-led invasion and/or bombing campaign in Iran.  It’s unfortunate.  Around 1,500 Russians are currently working at the Bushehr plant, and any sort of attack on the facility, similar to the U.S. and Israel-led attacks on an attempted Syrian nuclear power plant just a few years ago, would likely trigger World War III.  The war profiteers of the world must be salivating at the very notion.  Oil companies too are likely eager to get their hands on Iranian reserves, just as we have seen in Iraq with its once off-limits oil fields now open to bids from multination oil firms.  But remember folks, it wasn’t a war for oil… right?  Libya doesn’t have oil do they?  Oh wait… yes… yes they do.  Sigh… World War III here we come! 

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Oct 19, 2020

Itronics successfully tests manganese recovery process

Scott Birch
3 min
Nevada firm aims to become the primary manganese producer in the United States
Nevada firm aims to become the primary manganese producer in the United States...

Itronics - a Nevada-based emerging cleantech materials growth company that manufacturers fertilisers and produces silver - has successfully tested two proprietary processes that recover manganese, with one process recovering manganese, potassium and zinc from paste produced by processing non-rechargeable alkaline batteries. The second recovers manganese via the company’s Rock Kleen Technology.

Manganese, one of the four most important industrial metals and widely used by the steel industry, has been designated by the US Federal Government as a "critical mineral." It is a major component of non-rechargeable alkaline batteries, one of the largest battery categories sold globally.

The use of manganese in EV batteries is increasing as EV battery technology is shifting to use of more nickel and manganese in battery formulations. But according to the US Department of Interior, there is no mine production of manganese in the United States. As such, Itronics is using its Rock Kleen Technology to test metal recoverability from mine tailings obtained from a former silver mine in western Nevada that has a high manganese content. 

In a statement, Itronics says that its Rock Kleen process recovers silver, manganese, zinc, copper, lead and nickel. The company says that it has calculated – based on laboratory test results – that if a Rock Kleen tailings process is put into commercial production, the former mine site would become the only primary manganese producer in the United States.

Itronics adds that it has also tested non-rechargeable alkaline battery paste recovered by a large domestic battery recycling company to determine if it could use one of its hydrometallurgical processes to solubilize the manganese, potassium, and zinc contained in the paste. This testing was successful, and Itronics was able to produce material useable in two of its fertilisers, it says.

"We believe that the chemistry of the two recovery processes would lend itself to electrochemical recovery of the manganese, zinc, and other metals. At this time electrochemical recovery has been tested for zinc and copper,” says Dr John Whitney, Itronics president. 

“Itronics has been reviewing procedures for electrochemical recovery of manganese and plans to move this technology forward when it is appropriate to do so and has acquired electro-winning equipment needed to do that.

"Because of the two described proprietary technologies, Itronics is positioned to become a domestic manganese producer on a large scale to satisfy domestic demand. The actual manganese products have not yet been defined, except for use in the Company's GOLD'n GRO Multi-Nutrient Fertilisers. However, the Company believes that it will be able to produce chemical manganese products as well as electrochemical products," he adds.

Itronics’ research and development plant is located in Reno, about 40 miles west of the Tesla giga-factory. Its planned cleantech materials campus, which will be located approximately 40 miles south of the Tesla factory, would be the location where the manganese products would be produced.

Panasonic is operating one of the world's largest EV battery factories at the Tesla location. However, Tesla and other companies have announced that EV battery technology is shifting to use of nickel-manganese batteries. Itronics is positioned and located to become a Nevada-0based supplier of manganese products for battery manufacturing as its manganese recovery technologies are advanced, the company states.

A long-term objective for Itronics is to become a leading producer of high purity metals, including the U.S. critical metals manganese and tin, using the Company's breakthrough hydrometallurgy, pyrometallurgy, and electrochemical technologies. ‘Additionally, Itronics is strategically positioned with its portfolio of "Zero Waste Energy Saving Technologies" to help solve the recently declared emergency need for domestic production of Critical Minerals from materials located at mine sites,’ the statement continues.

The Company's growth forecast centers upon its 10-year business plan designed to integrate its Zero Waste Energy Saving Technologies and to grow annual sales from $2 million in 2019, to $113 million in 2025.

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