Lithium History

We can sustain the Albemarle advantage because our unique position is difficult to replicate and has taken more than 100 years to establish.

Albemarle’s lithium business historically emerged from the combination of expertise in chemistry and metallurgy. The company’s product portfolio is based on continuous research and development of leading edge technologies. High performing products combined with Albemarle’s dedication to providing the best technical service and support to its customers have allowed it to establish excellent market positions in its fields of activity.

1914

Development of 'Bahnmetall', also called 'Lurgi metal', used as a material for the bearings in trains.

1922/1923

Improvement of 'Bahnmetall' by the addition of lithium. This was the first time ever that lithium salts were produced on an industrial scale.

1953

Establishment of a separate lithium division in view of the ever increasing applications for lithium compounds.

1982

As of October 1st, Metallgesellschaft contributed the 'Technische Kernverfahren Division' into Chemetall, Gesellschaft für chemisch-technische Verfahren mbH.

1992

Chemetall GmbH was integrated into Dynamit Nobel which became part of Metallgesellschaft in the same year.

1998

Acquisition of the US lithium specialist Cyprus Foote.

2004

Chemetall group acquired by Rockwood Holdings, Inc.

2012

Chemetall's lithium, cesium and special metals business started trading globally under the new name Rockwood Lithium.

2014

Acquisition of a 49% share in Talison Lithium Pty Ltd.
Talison is the leading spodumene producer with the largest and richest spodumene mine in the world.

2015

Albemarle Corporation acquired Rockwood Holdings, Inc. in January.

2016

Rockwood Lithium adopts the Albemarle brand.