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Newsletter #3 - September 2016

The EU ETN DEMETER team is delighted to share its new animation video, featuring Early Stage Researcher Gwen Bailey (KU Leuven). This Storyrunner video covers the challenging area of the design and recycling of the rare-earth permanent magnet motors used in hybrid and electric vehicles (HEVs). It covers the geopolitical aspects in a very original way and explains the complex science and technology behind the DEMETER project in such a way that the video is perfectly understandable for a non-scientific audience.

Presenting... MSCA-ETN DEMETER
The automotive sector is likely to become the main consumer of REE magnets in Europe (NdFeB and SmCo), as it moves towards more Hybrid Electric Vehicles (HEVs) and Full Electric Vehicles (EVs). However, current H(E)Vs have not been designed in view of re-use or recycling, necessitating efforts to develop novel solutions. 
Being the European Training Network for the Design and Recycling of Rare-Earth Permanent Magnet Motors and Generators in Hybrid and Full Electric Vehicles ((H)EVs), DEMETER takes this challenge head on. In this project 15 Early Stage Researchers (ESRs) are trained by a leading consortium of universities, research institutes and manufacturers. DEMETER develops innovative, eco-friendly solutions for both (H)EVs that are already on the market and for the (H)EVs of the future.

NEOHIRE is a new project funded* through Horizon 2020, answering the NMBP-03-2016 call. The project is coordinated by CEIT (Spain) and involves DEMETER Beneficiaries KU Leuven and University of Birmingham as core research partners. The objective is to reduce the use of rare earths, cobalt and gallium in wind turbine generators. NEOHIRE not only develops a new concept of bonded NdFeB magnets but it also targets novel recycling techniques for these critical raw materials from present and future permanent magnet wastes. (*Pending formal completion GA Procedure).
New papers on NdFeB magnets
Oeko paper on the recycling potential of NdFeB magnets: R. Schulze, M. Buchert, Estimates of global REE recycling potentials from NdFeB magnet material, Resources, Conservation and Recycling, 113, 2016, 12–27. Download here.
Y. Yang, A. Walton, R. Sheridan, K. Güth, R. Gauß, O. Gutfleisch, M. Buchert, B.M. Steenari, T. Van Gerven, P.T. Jones, K. Binnemans, REE Recovery from end-of-life NdFeB permanent magnet scrap: a critical review, Journal of Sustainable Metallurgy, 2016, in print. (see also Binnemans et al.’s critical review 2013 paper).

K. Žagar, A. Kocjan, S. Kobe, Magnetic and microstructural investigation of high-coercivity net-shape Nd–Fe–B-type magnets produced from spark-plasma-sintered melt-spun ribbons blended with DyF3, Journal of Magnetism and Magnetic Materials, 403, 2016, 90–96. Download here.
ERES 2017
Following the success of ERES 2014 and under the framework of the EU FP7 EURARE project and the EU FP7 MC-ITN EREAN training network, the 2nd European Rare Earth Resources conference is held in 2017 in Santorini, Greece. The Conference includes both geological and metallurgical topics for production of REE from primary and secondary REE resources. The conference includes both oral presentations and intensified poster presentations (3 min presentations in an auditorium).

BBC Midlands video on HD technology
The permanent magnet market is not only the largest of all the rare earth sectors by volume and cost, but the rare earths used in permanent magnets (neodymium and dysprosium) face the greatest supply risks compared with the other rare earths. However, of all the rare earth sectors, the magnet market presents significant challenges for recycling. The DEMETER scientists of the University of Birmingham (UoB) have developed a unique way to recycle permanent magnets from complex products. Hydrogen Decrepitation (HD) reduces the magnets to a demagnetised hydrogenated alloy powder, which can be used for downstream processing into new magnets. The UoB is now tailoring this technology to specific consumer products as the challenges can be very different per type of product. In this BBC Midlands video a clear overview is provided to policy makers and other interested parties on how HD technology works. In DEMETER the UoB scientists are tailoring this technology to deal with the magnet motors and generators in Hybrid and Electric Vehicles.
  • Policy Workshop Technologies and Policies for a Circular Economy on Rare Earth Elements, Brussels, Belgium, 26/09/2016 - 27/09/2016 (Joint organisation by REEcover, REE4EU and EREAN) More info here
  • 3rd DEMETER Network Wide Event, Ljubljana, Slovenia, 27/02/2017 - 02/03/2017
  • 4th DEMETER Network Wide Event, Grenoble, France, 28/08/2017 - 31/08/2017
  • 2nd Conference on European Rare Earth Resources (ERES 2017), Santorini, Greece, 28/05/2017 – 31/05/2017 More info here
Copyright © 2016 Dr. Peter Tom Jones, All rights reserved.

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