REE4EU

Gallery REE4EU 1
Gallery REE4EU 1
July 2020
By SINTEF
Headquarters 7034 Trondheim, Norway
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REE4EU - Closed-loop rare earth recycling process for sustainable accessibility of critical raw materials used in green technologies

REE4EU enables the recovery and re-use of rare earth minerals for use in sectors such as hybrid vehicles and wind turbines, supporting the transition to a low carbon future.

Rare earth elements (REE) are targeted as a crucial component of "green technology" applications. Currently, it is forecasted an increasing demand of REE, mainly for neodymium-based permanent magnets used in highly effective motors for hybrid vehicles and wind turbine generators. The REE supply is however at risk due to the unpredictable trading policies. The REE4EU technology seeks to cover the European demand for REE using secondary REE-containing resources (i.e. from waste) currently available in Europe, thus realising an innovative closed-loop REE recycling process where REE-containing wastes are converted into REE-final products. The REE final products manufactured with recycled material showed the same properties as those made from virgin materials. Not only does REE4EU reduce landfill, but it also has far lower CO2 emissions than extracting and using virgin materials. Moreover, it also highlights competitive costs compared to the conventional scenario of primary REE extraction. The REE4EU technology can secure important value chains in Europe necessary for decarbonisation, resource efficiency and zero waste targets and gives a promising market opportunity for a European REE recycling business.

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Key features

  • Around 50% lower GHG emissions compared to use of virgin REE materials
  • Around 35% lower primary energy consumption than mainstream alternative

Profitability

  • Payback period of under three years

Activity Region

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Europe

Norway,

  • Headquarters
  • Activity

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