DOE to provide $18 million for research on rare earth materials


The US Department of Energy (DOE) will provide up to $18 million for basic research to ensure the continued availability of rare earth elements. Neodymium, praseodymium, lanthanum and other rare earth materials are widely used in a variety of technological applications, including EV motors and wind turbines. The research will seek breakthroughs that increase the availability or reduce the use of rare earth elements, lead to more efficient separation approaches to enable reuse, and discover effective substitutes for rare earth materials, among other topics. 

“Critical minerals and rare earth elements are essential to technologies that we use every day, from cell phones to lifesaving medical equipment to batteries for electric cars,” said Under Secretary of Energy Mark W. Menezes. “Unfortunately, the US is heavily dependent on countries like China to supply these critical materials. The research and development at DOE labs is critical to harnessing our domestic supply of rare earth elements and critical minerals, and is key to developing new ways to process and recycle these elements.”

DOE national laboratories are invited to submit proposals for breakthrough research in materials and chemical sciences. Applicants are encouraged to find partners at universities, national laboratories, and other institutions. Awards are expected for both small groups and larger multidisciplinary teams.

Source: DOE