• RARE EARTH ELEMENTS (REE)China’s Disinformation Campaign Against Rare Earth Processing Facilities

    China dominates the production and processing of rare-earth elements (REEs). In order to lessen this dependence on the critical minerals, the U.S. government has been supporting the development of U.S. REE sources. China has been trying to prevent this shift by launching a disinformation campaign: China’ intelligence services have created social media accounts of fake local environmentalists who spread disinformation to local communities about the REE facilities being built nearby.

  • RARE EARTH ELEMENTS (REE)Separation and Purification of Rare-Earth Elements by Microorganisms

    Using naturally occurring and engineered proteins and bacteria, scientists will separate and purify rare-earth elements so they can be used in the defense sector.

  • CRITICAL MINERALSU.S. Invests $74M in Federal-State Partnership for Critical Mineral Mapping

    The Department of the Interior announced that, thanks to a substantial investment from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, over $74.6 million will be distributed in 30 states to invest in geoscience data collection, mapping, data preservation, and scientific interpretation of areas with potential for critical minerals. Improving our understanding of domestic critical mineral resources is a key step in securing a reliable and sustainable supply of the critical minerals.

  • RARE EARTH ELEMENTS (REE)Recovering Rare-Earth Elements from E-Waste

    DARPA has selected multiple teams of university researchers for the Recycling at the Point of Disposal (RPOD) program. RPOD will evaluate the technical feasibility of recovering multiple low-volume fraction critical elements present in end-of-life electronics hardware (e-waste). The project aims to redefine tech for distributed, small-footprint recycling of critical elements.

  • ARGUMENT: CRITICAL MINERALSAddressing China’s Growing Influence over Latin America’s Mineral Resources

    The United States and its partners in the hemisphere must address a major strategic challenge: China’s growing influence over Latin America’s critical and natural mineral resources. Adina Renee Adler and Haley Ryan write that “Allowing a geostrategic competitor like China to wield disproportionate influence over access to critical minerals—or allowing production to become concentrated in a single geographic region—poses a serious risk to the United States and its allies.”

  • CHINA WATCHChina Looks to Africa in Race for Lithium

    By Kate Bartlett

    Electric cars, and other green technologies, are dependent on lithium, and growing demand has caused the prices for lithium to increase by almost 500 percent in the past year. Africa has ample resources of lithium, and China is leading the race to control the continent’s lithium resources.

  • CRITICAL MINERALSThe "Rock-to-Metal Ratio" of Critical Minerals

    A new metric to quantify the amount of waste rock generated by mining for minerals essential to 21st century society has been created by the U.S. Geological Survey and Apple.

  • CRITICAL MATERIALSReviving the National Defense Stockpile Funding

    Established during World War II, the National Defense Stockpile (NDS) ensures that the Department of Defense can access key materials necessary to maintain readiness in the event of a major supply chain disruption. Current critical minerals stockpile is inadequate to meet the requirements of great power competition.

  • CRITICAL METALSChinese Rare Earth Consolidation a Cause for Concern

    By Kristin Vekasi

    The world needs more readily available rare earth metals. Over the coming decades, demand for rare earths is forecasted to increase by two to eight times over current supply. Through effective long-term investment across the rare earth supply chain, China has earned some 50–60 per cent of the mining market share and around 90 per cent in the intermediate processing stage.

  • CRITICAL METALSThe EU's Risky Dependency on Critical Chinese Metals

    By Insa Wrede

    The EU needs critical metals and rare earths to succeed in its energy transition and digitization drive. But even as the EU tries hard to cut its energy supplies from Russia, the bloc is also heavily dependent on China when it comes to the industrial metals and rare earths.

  • THE RUSSIA CONNECTIONA Headache for Germany: Russian Nickel, Palladium, Chromium Exports

    By Arthur Sullivan

    Russian gas and oil are by far the most significant exports Moscow sells to Germany. Yet other important raw materials are also under the spotlight because of the war in Ukraine.

  • CRITICAL MATERIALSUkraine War’s Impact on Critical Materials Supply, Green Energy

    By Gavin Harper

    The elephant in the room is Europe’s dependence on the vast quantities of hydrocarbons that flow from Russia into Europe, but Putin’s war on Ukraine has the potential to affect many key supply chains for materials that will contribute to the clean energy transition.

  • CRITICAL MATERIALSGerman Auto Industry Alarmed Over Lack of Raw Materials

    By Klaus Ulrich

    Critical raw materials from Russia and Ukraine could become increasingly scarce as a result of the conflict. Car industry experts called on the EU to seek new markets and boost the domestic extraction of key metals.

  • INFRASTRUCTUREGiving New Life to Old Concrete Structures Through “Vascularization”

    Concrete is a ubiquitous building material, and it is often cited as the most consumed commodity on Earth, second only to potable water. As this inherited concrete infrastructure continues to age, maintaining and repairing concrete is of increasing strategic importance to both defense and civilian infrastructure. DARPA’s BRACE program aims to revitalize legacy DoD infrastructure to extend its serviceability.

  • RARE EARTH ELEMENTSArtificial Intelligence’s Promise: Discovering New Rare-Earth Compounds

    Rare earth elements have a wide range of uses including clean energy technologies, energy storage, permanent magnets, defense technology, and much more. Artificial intelligence advances how scientists explore materials, and researchers have developed an AI-based framework for experimenting with compounds and understanding chemical instabilities.