Australian Strategic Materials, ZironTech produce high-purity praseodymium at pilot plant

Praseodymium pieces. (Image by W. Oelen, Wikimedia Commons).

Australian Strategic Materials announced that its partner ZironTech has produced high-purity praseodymium metal (99.3%) at its commercial pilot plant in South Korea. 

In a press release, AMS said this milestone is the final testing stage of the patented metallization process for permanent magnet metals. Now, the company will progress to the production of dysprosium metal and to alloying the key permanent magnet metal neodymium/praseodymium (NdPr).

Australian Strategic Materials, ZironTech produce high-purity praseodymium at pilot plant
High-purity praseodymium metal at 99.3%. (Image courtesy of Australian Strategic Materials).

These metals are essential for advanced technologies, including electric vehicles and clean energy. The production of these key permanent magnet metals brings ASM a step closer to being an integrated ‘mine to metals; producer,” David Woodall, managing director of the Australian company, said in the media brief.

According to Woodall, ASM has an exclusive worldwide license to commercialize its clean and environmentally responsible metal-refining technology and it is working towards engaging with countries like Korea and Australia that want to move away from the less sustainable traditional production methods.

In parallel, the miner continues to work on bringing its Dubbo project in central-western New South Wales into production. Dubbo hosts the Toongi deposit, which contains zirconium, rare earths, niobium and hafnium with reserves that support an initial project life of 20 years.

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