General Atomics and the Department of Energy have completed negotiations regarding a financial award for an industry team to build a rare earth element separation and processing facility.
The company said Thursday its electromagnetic systems business will lead the team that will construct and operate the REE demonstration factory as part of the 40-month project.
“REEs are critical to a wide range of technologies supporting both commercial and defense-related applications, including electric vehicles, solar panels, fiber optics, and high-strength permanent magnets,” said Scott Forney, president of General Atomics Electromagnetic Systems.
“This project will provide valuable information regarding the development of domestic rare earth element resources and separation technologies that have the potential to improve REE supply and availability to meet growing demand.”
DOE selected and notified GA-EMS to discuss contract terms in March after the group’s selection to carry out the project under the Critical Materials Funding Opportunity Announcement.
General Atomics’ European arm, Rare Element Resources and Ardurra Group’s LNV subsidiary are the project team members.
The demo plant will be built to facilitate the process of separating and purifying rare earth oxides that come from an ore deposit located in Wyoming.