The focus on securing critical materials supplies is gaining further momentum this month: the EU released an insightful report on critical raw materials (EU) while the UK published a critical minerals study for their country (Mining.com). China weighs export ban for rare earth magnet technology (Nikkei Asia). And some interesting projects such as using coal ash and other mine wastes as potential viable source of rare earth elements in South Africa (Mining Weekly) or mining lithium in Canada abandoned oil fields for tomorrow's EVs (Bloomberg).
Further on the scientific front with a new oxygen ion battery chemistry at TU Wien, a novel copper-aluminium-zinc alloy for refrigeration at Tokyo University of Science, a magnetic quantum material for ultra fast and energy efficient computers at University of Technology Chalmers, a viable formula for carbon negative concrete at Washington State University. And finally the release of the Australian Government long term vision for quantum technologies.
Regarding sustainability initiatives, we selected 5 initiatives: underground water as a possible solution to green heating and cooling at Berkeley Lab, a mix of better policies, smarter recycling and new materials for virtuous plastics economy in Nature, solar-to-hydrogen power plants reaching kilowatt scale at EPFL, solar oven for lower cost bread in Lebanon as well as the $400 Million Grant to Fund Clean School Buses in the USA.
Also 11 of our Start Up alumni were in the news this month: a partnership for healable smartfoil (CompPair – Switzerland with Zesst), a significant funding round (Woodoo – France), a sizeable scale-up (Vartega - USA), a new CEO (Nawa - France) and many great press articles as usual (Bcomp – Switzerland, BeFC – France, C12 Quantum - France, Carbios – France, CompPair – Switzerland, EIFHYTEC - France, Fluence Analytics – USA, Graphene Manufacturing Group – Australia, NAWA Technologies – France, Zeta Energy – USA).
As always, we hope that you enjoy the reading.
The WMF Editorial Team, Victoire de Margerie, Nadja Leclere and Valentin Desbuis
EU, March 2023: EU Study on Critical Raw Materials