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Secure European Critical Rare Earth Elements

Objective

Rare Earth Elements (REEs) are critical and non-substitutable raw materials with high economic importance for European industry, as they are crucial components for a broad range of advanced products. The main goal of the SecREEts project is to establish a stable and secure supply of critical REEs based on sustainable extraction from European apatite sources used in fertiliser production. Pilot processes will be developed for the innovative extraction, separation and transformation of REEs. Rare Earth (RE) metals will be supplied to application areas like electric vehicles, industrial motors and wind turbines. Replication potential will be demonstrated in medical diagnostics, Fluid Catalytic Cracking and consumer products. The main objective of the project is to demonstrate a new integrated value chain for the optimal extraction, refining and production of REEs in Europe. This will be achieved through the development and demonstration of a number of innovative technologies:
• Utilise efficiently a novel industrial sidestream process in fertiliser production to extract the REEs
• Separate REEs by a novel chromatographic process into distinct nitrate salts
• Realise electrochemical production of metals and alloys from the above targeted RE oxides
• Demonstrate the market value and relevance of the produced RE metals in permanent magnets and its downstream products
• Validate market acceptance of the RE oxides not processed to metals
• Create an industrial symbiosis between two value chains
• Demonstrate the economic, environmental and societal sustainability as well as safety of the pilot units
SecREEts pilots will focus on Pr, Nd and Dy metals used in permanent magnets as these are extremely critical for the European economy. Industrial implementation of the pilots developed in SecREEts will lead to a supply of at least 3000 tonnes annually of REEs to European industries in 2023, with 75 M€ in estimated value.

Field of science

  • /social sciences/economics and business/economics/sustainable economy
  • /social sciences/economics and business/business and management/commerce
  • /social sciences/social and economic geography/transport/electric vehicles
  • /natural sciences/chemical sciences/inorganic chemistry/metals

Call for proposal

H2020-SC5-2017-TwoStage
See other projects for this call

Funding Scheme

IA - Innovation action

Coordinator

SINTEF AS
Address
Strindvegen 4
7034 Trondheim
Norway
Activity type
Research Organisations
EU contribution
€ 1 629 457,50

Participants (7)

Yara International ASA
Norway
EU contribution
€ 3 522 050
Address
Drammensveien 131
0277 Oslo
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
LESS COMMON METALS LIMITED
United Kingdom
EU contribution
€ 3 206 843,87
Address
Unit 2 Hooton Park, North Road
CH65 1BL Ellesmere Port
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
REETEC AS
Norway
EU contribution
€ 3 000 000
Address
Karenslyst Alle 9C
0278 Oslo
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
QUANTIS
Switzerland
EU contribution
€ 297 500
Address
Parc Scientifique Epfl Pse D
1024 Ecublens Vd
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
VACUUMSCHMELZE GMBH & CO KG
Germany
EU contribution
€ 109 840,50
Address
Gruner Weg 37
63450 Hanau
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
PROSPEX INSTITUTE
Belgium
EU contribution
€ 824 750
Address
Breydelstraat 34
1040 Brussels
Activity type
Other
INSTITUT NATIONAL DE L ENVIRONNEMENT ET DES RISQUES INERIS
France
EU contribution
€ 289 590
Address
Parc Technologique Alata
60550 Verneuil En Halatte
Activity type
Research Organisations