Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Almost All Of The Rare Earth Metals Critical For Clean Energy Come From China

From State of the Planet, "Rare earth metals: Another challenge for the green economy?" by Iliana Cardenes Trujillo:
earth metals, such as yttrium, lanthanum or cerium are formed from 17 chemically similar elements and are not often found in large enough concentrations to be profitable. They are, however, used in the manufacture of a wide range of technologies, from batteries to smartphones to military equipment. Because of their strong magnetic properties and high electrical conductivity, they are light in weight and efficient, making them critical to the clean energy industry. Wind turbines, energy-efficient light bulbs, electric car batteries, and efficiency motors/generators all depend on dysprosium, neodymium and their other cousins to generate the magnets that make them work. So far no substitute has been found that can match rare earths in weight and efficiency.
China mines 94 to 97% of the rare earth metals globally....

1 comment :

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