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Title: Recovery of Rare Earths, Precious Metals and Other Critical Materials from Geothermal Waters with Advanced Sorbent Structures

The work evaluates, develops and demonstrates flexible, scalable mineral extraction technology for geothermal brines based upon solid phase sorbent materials with a specific focus upon rare earth elements (REEs). The selected organic and inorganic sorbent materials demonstrated high performance for collection of trace REEs, precious and valuable metals. The nanostructured materials typically performed better than commercially available sorbents. Data contains organic and inorganic sorbent removal efficiency, Sharkey Hot Springs (Idaho) water chemsitry analysis, and rare earth removal efficiency from select sorbents.
Authors:
Publication Date:
Report Number(s):
686
DOE Contract Number:
FY15 AOP 2.5.1.6
Product Type:
Dataset
Research Org(s):
DOE Geothermal Data Repository; Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
Collaborations:
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), Geothermal Technologies Program (EE-2C)
Subject:
15 Geothermal Energy; geothermal; sorbents; nano; rare earth elements; REEs; precious metals; mineral recovery; green mining; Sharkey Hot Springs Water Chemistry; Inorganic sorbent removal efficiency; Organic Sorbent removal efficiency; Recovery of rare earths from sorbents; Sharkey Hot Springs aqueous chemistry; rare earth element; sorbent rare earth element removal efficiency; technical report
OSTI Identifier:
1236946
  1. The Geothermal Data Repository (GDR) is the submission point for all data collected from researchers funded by the U.S. Department of Energy's Geothermal Technologies Office (DOE GTO). The DOE GTO is providing access to its geothermal project information through the GDR. The GDR is powered by OpenEI, an energy information portal sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy and developed by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL).
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  1. This work evaluates, develops and demonstrates flexible, scalable mineral extraction technology for geothermal brines based upon solid phase sorbent materials with a specific focus upon rare earth elements (REEs). The selected organic and inorganic sorbent materials demonstrated high performance for collection of trace REEs, preciousmore » and valuable metals beyond commercially available sorbents. This report details the organic and inorganic sorbent uptake, performance, and collection efficiency results for La, Eu, Ho, Ag, Cu and Zn, as well as the characterization of these select sorbent materials. The report also contains estimated costs from an in-depth techno-economic analysis of a scaled up separation process. The estimated financial payback period for installing this equipment varies between 3.3 to 5.7 years depending on the brine flow rate of the geothermal resource. « less
  2. This GDR submission is an interim technical report and raw data files from the first year of testing on functionalized nanoparticles for rare earth element extraction from geothermal fluids. The report contains Rare Earth Element uptake results (percent removal, mg Rare Earth Element/gram of sorbent,more » distribution coefficient) for the elements of Neodymium, Europium, Yttrium, Dysprosium, and Cesium. A detailed techno economic analysis is also presented in the report for a scaled up geothermal rare earth element extraction process. All rare earth element uptake testing was done on simulated geothermal brines with one rare earth element in each brine. The rare earth element uptake testing was conducted at room temperature. « less
  3. Experimental results from several studies exploring the impact of pH and acid volume on the stripping of rare earth elements (REEs) loaded onto ligand-based media via an active column. The REEs in this experiment were loaded onto the media through exposure to a simulated geothermalmore » brine with known mineral concentrations. The data include the experiment results, rare earth element concentrations, and the experimental parameters varied. « less
  4. The current uncertainty in the global supply of rare earth elements (REEs) necessitates the development of novel extraction technologies that utilize a variety of REE source materials. Herein, we examined the techno-economic performance of integrating a biosorption approach into a large-scale process for producing salablemore » total rare earth oxides (TREOs) from various feedstocks. An airlift bioractor is proposed to carry out a biosorption process mediated by bioengineered rare earth-adsorbing bacteria. Techno-econmic asssements were compared for three distinctive categories of REE feedstocks requiring different pre-processing steps. Key parameters identified that affect profitability include REE concentration, composition of the feedstock, and costs of feedstock pretreatment and waste management. Among the 11 specific feedstocks investigated, coal ash from the Appalachian Basin was projected to be the most profitable, largely due to its high-value REE content. Its cost breakdown includes pre-processing (primarily leaching) (8077.71%), biosorption (1619.04%), and oxalic acid precipitation and TREO roasting (3.35%). Surprisingly, biosorption from the high-grade Bull Hill REE ore is less profitable due to high material cost and low production revenue. Overall, our results confirmed that the application of biosorption to low-grade feedstocks for REE recovery is economically viable. « less
  5. Google Earth .kmz files that contain the locations of geothermal wells and thermal springs in the USA, and seafloor hydrothermal vents that have associated rare earth element data. The file does not contain the actual data, the actual data is available through the GDR websitemore » in two tier 3 data sets entitled "Compilation of Rare Earth Element Analyses from US Geothermal Fields and Mid Ocean Ridge (MOR) Hydrothermal Vents" and "Rare earth element content of thermal fluids from Surprise Valley, California" « less