Projects

The SoS MinErals programme is made up of four full grant projects covering research into all of the so called e-tech elements: cobalt (Co), tellurium (Te), selenium (Se), neodymium (Nd), indium (In), gallium (Ga) and heavy rare earth elements (HREE). The projects will deliver not only a greater understanding of fundamental Earth processes, but it will also see the application of this science to develop novel extraction technologies, which will reduce carbon footprint and increase process efficiency whilst tailoring these solutions to end user needs.

SoS RARE

SoS Rare

The SoS RARE project aims to understand the mobility and concentration of Nd and HREE in natural systems, and to investigate new processes that will lower the environmental impact of rare earth element (REE) extraction and recovery. It brings together an interdisciplinary team of researchers to look at aspects of REE geology, chemistry and metallurgy, and will study both conventional REE deposits and ion adsorption clays (currently the world's major source of HREE).

CoG3: the geology, geometallurgy and geomicrobiology of cobalt resources leading to new product streams

CoG3

The principal aim of the CoG3 project is to understand the natural behaviour and biogeochemistry of Co in order to develop and apply novel bioprocessing strategies for Co extraction and recovery, and the synthesis of targeted products using an integrated multi-institute and multidisciplinary approach.


MarineE-tech

MarineE-tech

This project will enhance understanding of e-tech element cycling and concentration in marine seafloor ferromanganese deposits. Using a geometallurgical approach we will also assess the potential for recovery of e-tech elements from these deposits using low carbon extraction technologies such as bio-processing and ionic liquids. These core objectives will be complimented by an assessment of the potential ecological disturbance resulting from recovery of these resources from sensitive marine environments, where the regulatory framework and best practice is yet to be established.

TeASe: tellurium and selenium cycling and supply

By bringing together researchers, industrial partners, government agencies and end users from relevant sectors along the entire supply chain of Te and Se, this project aims to:

  • identify and quantify key processes and conditions that determine cycling and concentration of Se and Te through crustal systems
  • better quantify mineralogical- to crustal-scale repositories of Se and Te, including potentially exploitable resources
  • develop novel ore processing techniques to improve recovery of Se and Te, together or independently, whilst mitigating the environmental footprint of extraction and processing

Twitter: @TeASe_SoS