USA: Heavy Rare Earths From Recycled Material

by | 30. Aug 2023 - 15:04 | Economy

Rare Earth Salts develops new process and plans to supply customers at home and abroad.

U.S.-based rare earth metals separation specialist Rare Earth Salts Separations & Refining LLC has announced the commercial production and sale of heavy rare earth elements from recycled material according to a press release issued by the company. This marks the first full domestic supply chain for heavy rare earth elements in the United States, according to Rare Earth Salts.

Aaron Dowd, CEO of Rare Earth Salts, called a stable domestic supply chain “essential” to U.S. security and economic prosperity.

The company has developed its own process for extraction that, unlike traditional methods, does not use solvents. It also says that comparatively few separation steps are needed. The press release does not specify the material the rare earth oxides are recycled from. In the past, Rare Earth Salts was already able to produce lanthanum oxide from coal ash by using new methods.

In addition to terbium and yttrium, the company also recovers cerium, europium, and lanthanum from recycled materials. Terbium is an essential ingredient for the United States’ energy and transportation transition, which is to be driven by the Inflation Reduction Act. This will involve an increased focus on “Made in America” and the development of the country’s own supply chains for the necessary raw materials and components.

Photo: iStock/Petmal

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