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DOE looks to coal as a source of critical minerals and rare earth elements

The DOE Office of Fossil Energy has selected 13 projects to receive approximately $1.95 million in federal funding to develop conceptual designs for commercially viable technologies that will extract rare earth elements (REEs) from US coal and coal by-products. Each project will receive up to $150,000 in DOE funding. The conceptual designs will include system configurations, equipment features, performance characteristics and associated costs for systems that produce at least 1-3 metric tons per day of mixed rare earth oxides (REOs) or rare earth salts (RESs) and other critical minerals (CMs) in some designs.

The DOE’s Critical Minerals Sustainability Program has demonstrated the technical feasibility of extracting these resources from coal-based materials. The program has moved into bench-scale and engineering-scale prototype materials processing to address scale-up challenges and opportunities. The selected projects will accelerate the advancement of these commercially viable technologies.

The DOE’s National Energy Technology Laboratory will manage the projects, which will be carried out by the following recipients:

  • Battelle Memorial Institute (Columbus, OH)
  • BioCarbon Technologies (Missoula, MT)
  • Concurrent Technologies (Johnstown, PA)
  • Energy Fuels Resources (Lakewood, CO)
  • MATERIA USA (Inwood, NY)
  • MP Mine Operations (Mountain Pass, CA)
  • Tetra Tech (Pittsburgh, PA) Project 1
  • Texas Mineral Resources (Sierra Blanca, TX)
  • University of North Dakota (Grand Forks, ND)
  • UPSHOTS (Forsyth, GA)
  • West Virginia University Research (Morgantown, WV)
  • Winner Water Services (Sharon, PA)

The conceptual designs of each project include an option for up to a $2-million feasibility study. This study will support an Association for the Advancement of Cost Engineering Class 4 cost estimate on the conceptual facilities.

Source: DOE

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