‘Rare earths’ not so rare in South African mine site, miner reports

Rainbow Rare Earths has reported positive results in sampling for neodymium and praseodymium at its Phalaborwa site in South Africa.  The materials are among so-called ‘rare earths’ that are vital components of the  permanent magnets used in wind turbines and other generatorsand there are concerns that global supply of the elements is too tightly held by China.

George Bennett, CEO, said: “These assay results go a long way to confirming the substantial tonnage and value of the Phalaborwa Rare Earths Project in terms of both in-situ grade and the consistency of the high value NdPr content in the rare earths basket.”

He said that the high-grade, homogenous deposits had characteristics that made them relatively easy to exploit (minimal geological uncertainty, no waste stripping requirements and where the gypsum holding the material is ready to process).

Rainbow’s Gakara Project in Burundi is currently the only African producer of rare earths.

Further reading

Humber site to host processing facility for ‘rare earths’ that are key to batteries used for storage and wind turbines

From the New Power archive: Removing the lithium barrier

From the archive: Cobalt, lithium, copper … is metal supply a barrier for renewables and batteries?


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