Magnetics Business & Technology - Summer 2013 - (Page 4)

EDITOR’S CHOICE Extracting Rare Earth Materials from Consumer Products In a new twist on the state’s mining history, a group of Idaho scientists will soon be crushing consumer electronics rather than rocks in a quest to recover precious materials. DOE’s Ames Laboratory will lead the new Critical Materials Innovation Hub, and Idaho National Laboratory scientists will contribute to that effort. They’ll apply expertise gleaned from recycling fissionable material from nuclear fuel to separate rare earth metals and other critical materials from crushed consumer products. So-called rare earth elements, many of which can be found floating at the bottom of a standard periodic table, likely aren’t far from where you’re sitting. The bright red in that smartphone text or image: Europium. Powerful magnets driving electric motors in everything from wind turbines to vehicles to hand tools: Dysprosium, Neodymium. Phosphors coating the innards of energy-efficient light bulbs: Terbium, Yttrium and Europium. Many of these elements are the same ones Material separations scientists at INL’s centrifugal nuclear reprocessing research has targeted contactor lab. for years. They’re members of the lanthanide family of elements, which inhibit the fission process but are chemically similar to fissionable actinides. INL scientists have a long history of expertise devising new ways to effectively separate lanthanides from complex mixtures. INL will now apply that expertise to recycle rare earth and other critical elements from discarded electronics. The team will develop and test new processing methods that selectively recover critical metals using supercritical fluids, membranes and electrochemical approaches. These advanced separation techniques might also help mining operations by boosting extraction from raw ore. Because these materials are subject to supply disruptions, the DOE is investing in solutions to potential domestic shortages. New Study: Strict Regulations Could Doom US Rare Earths Mining With economic and military demand likely to grow in the next few years, the US must reform its mine permit process and safety regulations to get to the vast underground store of rare earths materials that could drive growth, add jobs and bring revenues to state budgets, according to a new study, “Rare Earths Mining Potential in the United States,”from the National Center for Policy Analysis (NCPA). “Rare earths and rare earth mining are crucial to modern life, providing critical components of everything from iPhones to computers, medical CAT scans, defense equipment, wind turbines and other forms of green energy. Yet, the US depends on other countries, some of which are not very friendly, for these elements, importing more than 96 percent of its rare earths,” said NCPA Adjunct Fellow Tom Tanton. “This dependence on foreign sources such as China for our supplies of these critical elements must end, and it can,” said Tanton. The study found that states with rare earths Summary Figure Global Market for Rare Earths, resources could increase gross state product by 2009-2016 (Metric Tons - Reo Equivalent) Source: BCC Research almost $40 billion, add nearly 3,600 shovelready jobs and improve state revenues by $724 million by simplifying the approval process for rare earths mining projects. “Australia and Canada set good examples of how it should be done. Their permit approval time is dramatically shorter than the average seven years it takes in this country,” said Tan- 4 Magnetics Business & Technology • Summer 2013 Volume 12, Issue 2 Editor & Publisher David Webster Director of Content Nick Depperschmidt Senior Editor Shannon Given Associate Editor Heather Krier Contributing Editor Stan Trout News Editors Sue Hannebrink, Jeremy Fleming Scott Webster, Robert Schaudt Director of Support Services/Circulation Marc Vang Databases/Directories Ross Webster Advertising Sales and Marketing Jeremy Fleming, Director of Sales Scott Webster, Advertising Sales Manager Production Julie Hammond Webmaster Brie Ryden Administration Marsha Grillo, Director Julie Williams, Office Manager Magnetics Business & Technology (ISSN #1535-1998) is a publication of Webcom Communications Corp. Subscriptions for one year are free for the qualified US, $44.00 non-qualified US and $60.00 outside US. Single copies are $20.00 each plus shipping. Back issues are available for $20.00. Payment must be made in US funds in order to process the order. Direct all subscription inquiries, orders and address changes to Fulfillment Services. Reprints: For reprint requests contact Webcom Communications at 720-528-3770. © Copyright 2013 Webcom Communications Corp. Material in this publication may not be reproduced in any form without written permission. Requests for permission should be directed to the customer service manager. Webcom Communications Corp. 7355 E. Orchard Road, Ste. 100 Greenwood Village, CO 80111 Phone 720-528-3770 Fax 720-528-3771

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

Magnetics Business & Technology - Summer 2013
Editor's Choice
Designing Current Transformers with Simulation
Magnets • Materials • Measurement
Application • Component Developments
Research & Development
New Linear Motor Designs Improve Speed and Positioning
Industry News
Marketplace/Advertising Index
Spontaneous Thoughts: Back to Normal

Magnetics Business & Technology - Summer 2013