Mineral & Rare Earth Elements Analyzers Portable X-ray fluorescence (XRF) technology can be used in a wide range of mineralogical and geological exploration markets, one of which is the mining of Rare Earth Elements (REEs).
Devices such as computer memory, rechargeable batteries, magnet, and even defense equipment/devices such as night vision goggles, precision-guided weapons and GPS equipment require rare earth metals. Companies mining and refining rare earth metals are profiting from the decades long increase in demand of these metals.
Monazite is one of the most common minerals of rare earth elements. Rare Earths Mining. Rare earths are a set of 17 chemical elements in the periodic table that, because of their unique geochemical properties, are typically widely dispersed in the Earth’s crust and are not often found in concentrated and economically exploitable forms.
The Mountain Pass mine is the largest producer of rare earth elements in the Western Hemisphere and constitutes 15 percent of the world’s production of the minerals, which are essential to manufacture high performance magnets.
Rare earth elements used to appear fairly close to the surface of the Earth, but humans have increasingly mined out accessible areas. As REEs become harder to extract, there is even discussion about mining them from the ocean floor. But for now, REEs come from open-pit mines.
Rare earth metals and alloys that contain them are used in many devices that people use every day such as computer memory, DVDs, rechargeable batteries, cell phones, catalytic converters, magnets, fluorescent lighting and much more. During the past twenty years, there has been an explosion in demand for many items that require rare earth metals.
A new pilot plant that will process rare earth elements necessary for many critical U.S. military weapons systems opened in June, as part of an effort to end China’s monopoly on the important resources. The pilot plant is a joint venture between USA Rare Earth and Texas Mineral Resources Corp.