09 Nov, 23

Groundbreaking Research Promises Greener Rare Earth Element Purification

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Cornell University scientists have characterized the genome of a metal-loving bacteria with an affinity for rare earth elements. The research paves the way towards replacing the harsh chemical processing of these elements with a benign practice called biosorption. Rare earth elements are critical materials in electric cars, wind turbines and smartphones. Today, retrieving these metals from raw ore requires processing with acids and solvents. But a new technology, envisioned by the scientists and powered by a microbe, could make processing rare…

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