The demand for rare earth elements (REEs), a group of 17 metals naturally found in the environment, including 15 lanthanides, scandium, and yttrium, has increased significantly due to their indispensable use in numerous advanced materials for electronics, energy, transportation, defense, and communications applications. The extensive use of high-tech applications in our daily lives combined with the depletion of primary ores for REEs and the environmental hazards associated with their mining, their recovery from secondary sources is now critical. Policymakers, researchers, and industries are now focused on developing novel recovery technologies for materials’ supply sustainability of REEs. The challenge to recovering REEs from secondary sources, such as e-waste, phosphogypsum, and spent battery materials is largely due to the complexity of chemical processing of components making the knowledge of solution chemistry and phase equilibria essential for understanding processes like hydrometallurgical extraction. In this webinar, Dr. Das will discuss how first principles based thermodynamic analysis can help to identify the most promising combinations of leachate, complexing agent, and process conditions for separation through solubilization or precipitation of REEs.
September 23, 2021