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AdamG
04-13-2018, 04:53 PM
Game changer.


Researchers have found hundreds of years' worth of rare-earth materials underneath Japanese waters enough to supply to the world on a "semi-infinite basis," according to a study published in Nature Publishing Group's Scientific Reports.
Rare-earth metals are crucial in the making of high-tech products such as electric vehicles and batteries, and most of the world has relied on China for almost all of its needs.





The materials sit in a roughly 965-square-mile Pacific Ocean seabed near Minamitorishima Island, which is located 1,150 miles southeast of Tokyo, according to the study published in Nature Publishing Group's Scientific Reports.

Rare-earth metals are crucial in the making of high-tech products such as electric vehicles, mobile phones and batteries, and the world has relied on China for almost all of its rare-earth material.

The seabed contains more than 16 million tons of rare-earth oxides, according to the study. That's equivalent to 780 years' worth of yttrium supply, 620 years of europium, 420 years of terbium and 730 years of dysprosium, it added.

The discovery "has the potential to supply these metals on a semi-infinite basis to the world," the study said.
Japan started looking after China cut off supplies

The discovery of the deposits could pit Japan against China to become the world's largest producer of the materials, The Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday.

Japan started seeking its own rare-earth metals after China held back shipments in 2010 during a dispute over islands both countries claim, Reuters reported in 2014. As a major electronics manufacturer, Japan needs rare earths for components.
https://www.cnbc.com/2018/04/12/japan-rare-earths-huge-deposit-of-metals-found-in-pacific.html

davidbfpo
04-13-2018, 06:18 PM
This is curious, it was previously reported as a discovery in 2013.
See:https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/8gvpmp/how-deep-sea-mud-found-off-a-tiny-japanese-island-may-change-the-gadget-economy

Quite an engineering feat required to access the raw material:
Exploration around the island of Minami-Torishima will continue for another two years before scaling up towards production. If Japan can find a cost-effective way of extracting the vast amount of minerals buried about 20,000 feet below the surface of the ocean, experts estimate the Asian country will have access to about 6.8 million tonnes of rare earths, equivalent to 230 years of local demand for the materials.
See:http://www.mining.com/japans-massive-rare-earth-discovery-threatens-chinas-supremacy-89013/

The publication in 'Nature' on April 10th might explain why the new media coverage happened, even if very technical to the layman.
Link:https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-018-23948-5.pdf




(http://www.mining.com/japans-massive-rare-earth-discovery-threatens-chinas-supremacy-89013/)

AdamG
04-14-2018, 02:11 PM
This is curious, it was previously reported as a discovery in 2013.

Missed that, good catch but un-surprising that technical publications would catch it well in advance of the main stream media.

Kinda raises the question again, what did Beijing find (or think they've found) that makes the Spratlys such an important game field?

davidbfpo
01-14-2019, 03:43 PM
OK, not in Japan, in Israel via BBC Monitoring:
A mineral - previously only known to exist in outer space - has been found on Earth by an Israeli mining company
Link:https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/blogs-news-from-elsewhere-46816297
Sounds horribly like PR "spin" and the use is jewellry.