Magnetics Business & Technology - Spring 2013 - (Page 25)

INDUSTRY NEWS Molycorp’s Rare Earth Complex is Operational, Ramping Up Production Molycorp, Inc. has announced that all key production components of its new state-of-the-art rare earth manufacturing complex in Mountain Pass, California are up and operational and that the facility has begun ramping up to its full-scale Phase 1 run rate. The company expects that with an orderly ramp up of production it will reach or exceed its Phase 1 run rate of 19,050 metric tons per year (mt/year) of rare earth oxide equivalent (REO) by mid-year. “Mountain Pass is the world’s largest, most technologically advanced, and most environmentally responsible rare earth manufacturing complex ever built, and reaching operational status is a historic event. I am very proud of the work of the entire Molycorp team in achieving this extraordinary milestone,” said Constantine Karayannopoulos, Molycorp president and CEO. The Mountain Pass complex is designed to be able to allow for expanded production to a Phase 2 rate of as much as 40,000 mt/ year of rare earth oxide equivalent. However, the company stated that, while most of the equipment necessary to complete Project Phoenix Phase 2 is already on site, the decision to complete Phase 2 construction and start-up will not be made until market demand, product pricing, capital availability, and financial returns justify additional increases in production beyond Phase 1. Company officials said that controlling capital and operating costs continues to be a top priority. With the combination of the new Phase 1 ramp-up schedule and current rare earth pricing environment, the company anticipates lower than expected revenue and cash flow for 2013, and is evaluating its capital needs for 2013. Lake Shore Acquires PMC and Its MicroMag Systems Michael Swartz, CEO of Lake Shore Cryotronics, and Harry Reichard, president of Princeton Measurements Corp. (PMC), have announced that PMC is now part of Lake Shore. This acquisition brings together two leaders in magnetics expertise, joining the MicroMag magnetometer systems from PMC to the growing family of Lake Shore products for advanced materials research. “Since 1989, Harry and the PMC team have pioneered in magnetics research with their Alternating Gradient Magnetometer and Vibrating Sample Magnetometer systems,” Swartz said. “We are pleased to announce that these high-performance systems will be part of the Lake Shore product line, complementing our own VSMs and related systems, and further broadening what we offer for our customers in materials characterization research.” “We are excited to become part of Lake Shore,” Reichard said. “Over the years, Lake Shore and PMC have shared the same spirit of dedication to customers and innovation. Working together, we plan to advance this technology by developing next-generation systems that will allow our research customers to conduct breakthrough research.” Lake Shore will continue to sell the Lake Shore VSM line alongside the MicroMag AGM and VSM systems. Field support for existing and new PMC equipment will be provided through Lake Shore’s global service network. “For PMC customers, this acquisition provides them with Lake Shore’s world-renowned sales and service and recognized technical expertise,” said Reichard. Swartz foresees considerable leverage in the combined strengths of the two companies. From early beginnings in the cryogenics arena, Lake Shore has grown to become a leading provider of sensors, instruments and systems that materials researchers increasingly rely upon for exploring and developing new magnetic, electronic, electro-optic, and related materials. “It’s a win for the magnetic research community,” he said. 2012 Global and Chinese PM Industry Report Research and Markets has announced the addition of the “Global and Chinese Permanent Magnet Industry Report, 2012” report to their offering. Permanent magnet is mainly divided into two categories: ferrite and rare earth magnet. Rare earth magnet mainly includes NdFeB. Due to the acute fluctuation of rare earth prices in 2011, NdFeB price correspondingly experienced wide fluctuations. The average price of NdFeB was RMB 106 / kg in January 2011, then rose sharply to RMB 615 / kg in July, but slumped to RMB 215 / kg in December. The average price in the third quarter of 2012 was RMB 173 / kg. The market prospects of HDD and ODD, which are the most important application fields of bonded NdFeB, look gloomy. Popular electronic products, such as tablet PC, which is gradually occupying traditional PC market, don’t use HDD and ODD. Traditional PC is HDD and ODD’s main market, and the market may decline continually. HDD shipment was about 620.652 million in 2011, but was only 442.32 million in the first three quarters of 2012, and is predicted to be only 582.31 million in 2012, down 6.2 percent yearon-year. The HDD shipment is estimated to decline to 536.82 million in 2015, down 14 percent compared with 2011. The ODD shipment was about 495 million in 2011, and it is expected to decline to 425 million in 2015. Other areas, such as frequency conversion air conditioner, e-bike and loudspeaker, are facing decline too. These areas are more sensitive to price, ferrite is competent in these areas too, and the cost is much lower. NdFeB is applied widely in automobile market, especially EPS. It is estimated global EPS motor shipment will reach 33.9 million in 2012, and run up to 42.6 million in 2014, up 25.7 percent. The application scope of EPS is stretching from high-end to low-end vehicles, so the market prospect is very good. But most EPS motors are produced by Japanese companies, who will purchase local magnet with priority. Molycorp Appoints Karayannopoulos Interim President and CEO Molycorp, Inc. has announced that its Board of Directors has appointed Constantine Karayannopoulos as Interim president and CEO and is immediately undertaking a search for a permanent President and CEO. He succeeds Mark A. Smith, who has left the company. Constantine Karayannopoulos will assume all management Spring 2013 • Magnetics Business & Technology 25

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Magnetics Business & Technology - Spring 2013

Magnetics Business & Technology - Spring 2013
Editor's Choice
Dysprosium-Free Rare Earth Magnets for High Temperature Applications
Research & Development
Simulating the Toyota Prius Electric Motor
Magnets • Materials • Measurement
Application • Component Developments
Industry News
Marketplace/Advertising Index
Spontaneous Thoughts: Dysprosium 2.0

Magnetics Business & Technology - Spring 2013