Leipzig/Germany: Ceritech AG develops a process to extract rare earth elements cost efficiently and environmental-friendly from gypsum tailings which are a waste product of the fertilizer production, produced in large quantities. The project consortium led by Ceritech received a funding from the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) for the rare earth gypsum project, mainly due to the well advanced project stage associated with its good feasibility perspective. The project will be funded with around EUR 1.2 million within the governmental funding measure “CLIENT II – International Partnerships for Sustainable Innovations”. The Project commences in January 2018 and has a duration of two years. The funding is not repayable.
Ceritech has set up an experienced and strong consortium of partners for the development of the rare earth project. As the project owner, Ceritech will lead the project and acts as project coordinator. The consortium consists of the Martin-Luther-University Halle-Wittenberg with its working group “Petrology and Economic Geology” and the Technical University Clausthal with the department of Mineral and Waste Processing. In Brazil the project is supported by the “Modelling and Mineral Processing Research Laboratory, Universidade Federal de Goiás”. The rare earth gypsum project and its technology was developed by Ceritech. The purpose of the project is to advance the technology to industrial maturity. To this effect, the operation and the optimization of pilot plants are envisaged. The pilot plants will help to improve the process to develop a marketable rare earth oxide.
Rare earth-bearing gypsum tailings from the fertilizer industry have proven to be a sustainable and economically interesting source for the production of the highly demanded rare earth metals. Currently, the gypsum tailings are used as soil enhancement in agriculture and are dumped in large tailings – in both cases without winning the contained rare earth elements. Ceritech wants to change that and intends to win the rare earth elements from the gypsum waste stream and wants to bring it to economic use. An interesting and important secondary aspect is, that there is no need for additional mining operation including infrastructure. This leads to a significant cost advantage and also contributes to a very positive environmental balance.
Joerg Reichert, CEO of Ceritech AG, comments: “We are very pleased that the BMBF shares our assessment of the economic potential and the sustainability of our rare earth gypsum project. The funding will help us to successfully develop the project during the coming years.”
Leipzig, 11 January 2018
Ceritech develops a process to win rare earth metals from gypsum tailings of the fertilizer industry. Main objective is the identification of suitable projects and to bring these projects into rare earth production. Main core regions for Ceritech’s project acquisition are Europe and South America. More information is available at www.ceritech.com.
Dr. Joerg Reichert
Tel. +49 341 6981 7600
Dr. Jörg Reichert
Tel. +49 341 6981 7600