Novel Technique for Domestic Rare Earth Oxide Separation and Rare Earth Metal Reduction

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Exploratory Topics
Woburn, Massachusetts
Project Term:
06/21/2021 - 12/20/2022

Technology Description:

Rare earth metals (REMs) are crucial for a domestic clean energy future, as they are key to several emerging technologies from wind turbines to electric vehicles. Currently, high energy requirements, hazardous waste generation, and the associated costs inhibit domestic commercial viability of rare earth separation and metallization processes, so rare earth material is sent to China for processing. Phoenix Tailings (PT) has developed novel techniques to separate rare earth oxides (REOs) without the use of hazardous chemicals and reduce them to REMs using 35-45% less energy. PT will separate REOs through selective halogenation and use mixed halide salts to reduce them. The result is a new domestic rare earth supply chain that removes cost-preventative energy requirements and environmentally unacceptable solvents.


ARPA-E Program Director:
Dr. Douglas Wicks
Project Contact:
Dr. Thomas Villalon
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