This NextMine™ project will investigate ways of instituting an industrial ecological approach to the rare earth supply chain by working with mining companies, product developers for electronics, and smelters who could use discarded and disaggregated products.
Currently around 95% of rare earth minerals are mined in China and supply constrictions as well as rising demand has raised the price of some of these minerals by 2000% over the last 3 years. This project will have immediate industry and policy relevance and raise the profile of SMI research in the field of rare earth minerals given the urgent need for clear solutions-oriented research on this topic of contemporary global concern.
Project Title: Applying Industrial Ecology to the Mining Industry: The Rare Earth Supply Chain as a Prototype for Systems Solutions to Supply Constraints
Research Leader: Professor Saleem Ali
Collaborating Disciplines: Social Responsibility, Mineral Processing, Mining & Geology, Environment
Project Start Date: 1st January 2013
Project Completion Date: 30th June 2014
For more information on the Rare Earths project, please go to: Rare Earths Website