US Department of Energy/West Virginia University Commission Rare Earth Element Plant

July 18, 2018

WVU Rare Earth Extraction Facility Commissioning Ceremony
WVU Rare Earth Extraction Facility Commissioning Ceremony

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (AP) – Officials plan to hold a ribbon cutting for a pilot-scale processing plant at West Virginia University aimed at recovering rare earth elements from coal and its byproducts.

A ceremony is scheduled Wednesday at the National Research Center for Coal and Energy on WVU’s Evansdale campus in Morgantown.

WVU Pilot Rare Earth Element Plant
WVU Pilot Rare Earth Element Plant

WVU says the goal of the project is to test the feasibility of establishing a commercial process for recovering valuable rare earth elements from coal waste and acid mine drainage, which is the most abundant pollutant in West Virginia waters.

WVU says if successful, the process would provide a source of rare-earth elements that currently doesn’t exist in the United States.

Rare earth elements have numerous applications and are used in devices such as cell phones, medical equipment and defense applications.

Rick Perry Coal-Based Rare Earth Element Proponent
Rick Perry Coal-Based Rare Earth Element Proponent

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