PROCESSING

Ucore receives evaluation on separation tech

The RapidSX process is three times faster than conventional solvent extraction

 Recent tests confirmed RapidSX technology

Recent tests confirmed RapidSX technology

Ucore Rare Metals' proprietary RapidSX separation technology is able to separate both light and heavy rare earth elements using the same chemistry, an independent third-party review has found.

This means there is no risk in chemistry complications for scaling up the process, Ucore said.

The RapidSX process is three times faster than conventional solvent extraction, the assessors found. A production plant would potentially have a two-thirds smaller footprint than a conventional plant, with a separation process capital cost of 50% or more.

Operating costs for the RapidSX process will likely be 20% less than for conventional processing.

The RapidSX technology can be configured to process 1,000 to more than 10,000 tonnes per annum of REEs, Ucore said.

The first test was performed on a synthetic REE solution of praseodymium, neodymium, samarium, and gadolinium. The second test was undertaken on heavy REO sourced from an operating rare earth mine.

RapidSX results were consistently higher than results from conventional separation technologies, with a higher separation factor reached in 100 seconds, Ucore said.

Ucore plans to advance the construction of the demonstration plant within RapidSX's commercial development facility. The plant is scheduled for commissioning in mid-2022.

Ucore owns the Bokan-Dotson Ridge rare earth element project in Alaska, and is developing the Alaskan Strategic Metals Complex in southeast Alaska.

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