Recently, there have been significant efforts to identify and develop potential new sources of rare-earth elements (REEs) outside of China: new production sites, recycling solutions.
Previous study showed that dynamic combinatorial chemistry (DCC) can provide, from trivial building blocks, an architecturally complex organic material, in which carbon dioxide is reversibly incorporated. Based on these results, selective capture of rare earth metals was achieved using a multicomponent assembled architectures with CO2 incorporation.
• Researchers and businesses are looking for the best ways to cost-effectively reclaim and recycle REEs, which is particularly challenging
• Most of the recycling techniques rely on high temperatures, large amount of solvents, as well as heavy infrastructures. Therefore there is a need for environmental-friendly and affordable processes
• With our technology, one can selectively capture rare earth elements:
- With high selectivity using trivial organic building blocks
- In one step process
- At room temperature
- Without toxic solvents
• Proof of concept has been developed in lab scale experiment
• Further developments are on going on specific industrial wastes
Recycling of rare earth metals: electronic waste (smartphones, computer, hard drives), magnets (wind turbine), catalysts, fluorescent lighting, batteries (electric vehicles), glass mirror, etc.