DOE awards $56.5M to 32 coal technology projects

The US Department of Energy (DOE) is awarding $56.5 million in federal funding to 32 cost-shared research and development (R&D) projects for advanced coal technologies and research under six separate funding opportunity announcements (FOAs). The projects cover a range of topics, including carbon capture, utilization, and storage; rare earth element... Read more →


Researchers at the University of Michigan have mapped the annual flow of steel in the US, with the goal of achieving a detailed understanding of the flow to target increased material efficiency and the development of the circular economy. The results of the material flow analysis (MFA), published in the... Read more →


Ascend Performance Materials will launch several new long-chain polyamides and high-temperature polyamides at K 2019 in Düsseldorf in October. Vydyne XHT, a new portfolio of heat-stabilized polyamide 66 and copolymers, is capable of withstanding prolonged exposure to temperatures up to 230 ˚C. Using a combination of unique polymer chemistries and... Read more →


Some key materials used for manufacturing lithium-ion batteries are lithium, cobalt, nickel, manganese, and natural graphite, which come from more than 30 different countries. In 2017, Australia, Chile, and Argentina produced 91% of all lithium while the rest of the world supplied the remaining 9%. The Democratic Republic of Congo... Read more →


BASF and its partner BNP Brinkmann are supporting the the German Aerospace Center’s (Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- and Raumfahrt/DLR) current research project “Next Generation Car” (NGC) with a tailormade, lightweight composite based on natural fiber. The goal of the DLR NGC project is to promote the development of quiet, low-emission... Read more →


CRU analysts observe that lithium prices have steadily declined since the end of Q1, finally crashing through the $10/kg LCE mark at the end of July. Weaker-than-expected demand in China is partly responsible, but the main driver has been the ongoing avalanche of new supply into the market, as plentiful... Read more →


Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources Amarjeet Sohi announced a $2-million investment in a $5.1-million Canada Mining Innovation Council (CMIC) initiative to develop an energy-efficient mining technology that could significantly reduce energy consumption at mine sites, cut costs and make remote mining operations more productive. Crushing and grinding rocks into smaller... Read more →


Teijin Limited completed the acquisition of Benet Automotive s.r.o. (Benet), a leading automotive composite and component supplier in the Czech Republic, from Jet Investment. Teijin is targeting automotive composite business sales of approximately €1.7 billion (US$2 billion) by 2030. Teijin will benefit from Benet’s automotive composite technologies and its well-proven... Read more →


On 20 August, the Indonesian-flagged 52,400 dwt bulk carrier Nur Allya, loaded with nickel ore, was reported missing in Indonesian waters. With no word on the fate of the missing crew of 25, INTERCARGO, the International Association of Dry Cargo Shipowners, expressed its concern for the missing crew and its... Read more →


Researchers demonstrate effective silicon-based thermoelectric generators

A University of Texas at Dallas physicist has teamed with Texas Instruments Inc. to demonstrate thermoelectric generators (TEGs) created using nanostructured silicon thermopiles fabricated on an industrial silicon complementary metal–oxide–semiconductor (CMOS) process line. Described in a paper in the journal Nature Electronics, these TEGs exhibit a high specific power generation... Read more →


DOE researchers develop energy-efficient, cost-effective process to extract rare earth elements from scrapped magnets

Researchers at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) and colleagues have developed a process to extract rare earth elements from the scrapped magnets of used hard drives and other sources. They have patented and scaled-up the process in lab demonstrations and are working with ORNL’s licensee Momentum Technologies to scale the... Read more →


Researchers discover potential path to improving samarium-cobalt magnets

Researchers have discovered a potential tool to enhance magnetization and magnetic anisotropy, making it possible to improve the performance of samarium-cobalt (Sm-Co) magnets. Sm-Co magnets were the first rare-earth permanent magnets, and are still the top performer in applications where resistance to demagnetization—its coercivity—and performance at high temperatures are important.... Read more →


Continental presents action plan for immediately reducing lead in electronic components in cars

Continental has submitted a plan of action to the Lower Saxony Ministry for the Environment, Energy, Construction and Climate Protection with which the company intends immediately to reduce the lead content in some of its electronic components to legally prescribed maximum quantities in accordance with the End of Life Vehicles... Read more →


Researchers observe new way for metals to bend

A team of researchers has observed a new mechanism for metallic bending. The discovery not only upends previous notions about how metals deform, but could help guide the creation of stronger, more durable materials. AN open-access paper on the study is published in the journal Nature Communications. This creates new... Read more →


Rio Tinto’s Resolution Copper project in Arizona has achieved a major permitting milestone with the release of an independently prepared Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) for the project. The review was conducted by the US States Forest Service (USFS) over a six-year period. Resolution, one of the most significant undeveloped... Read more →


Adamas: China rare earth consumption for catalytic converters down on weak passenger vehicle production

Adamas Intelligence reports that according to the Association of China Rare Earth Industry (ACREI), China’s domestic manufacturers produced approximately 7.6 million liters of vehicle exhaust gas catalyst in the first half of 2019—a decrease of 13% year-over-year on weak passenger vehicle production. Vehicle exhaust gas catalysts comprising platinum-group metals are... Read more →


Roskill: world copper market size previously underestimated; EVs to account for 3.1-4.0Mt net growth by 2035

Roskill has constructed a comprehensive copper industry reference dataset covering the period 2014-2018, built upon a production, trade and consumption platform of the eleven main markets for semi-manufactures in copper and copper alloys. This new original data has been used to verify historical time series statistics of apparent and reported... Read more →


The aluminum producer Hydro now supplies sustainable aluminum for the battery housing of the Audi e-tron EV. The material is processed and manufactured along the entire process chain in an environmentally friendly manner and under socially acceptable working conditions. This has been confirmed by the Aluminium Stewardship Initiative (ASI) with... Read more →


New multilab consortium to advance materials for hydrogen service

Researchers at Sandia and Pacific Northwest national laboratories are leading a collaborative effort to investigate how hydrogen affects materials such as plastics, rubber, steel and aluminum. The Hydrogen Materials Compatibility Consortium, or H-Mat, will focus on how hydrogen affects polymers and metals used in diverse sectors including fuel cell transportation... Read more →


LG Chem to host 2nd Global Innovation Contest; petrochemicals, batteries, advanced materials, biotechnologies

LG Chem will host the 2nd Global Innovation Contest (GIC) for leading universities and research institutions worldwide. The contest is open for entry until 30 September in 4 categories: Petrochemicals, Batteries, Advanced Materials, and Bio technologies. Being the first of its kind in Korean chemical industry, Global Innovation Contest invites... Read more →


Queen’s University Belfast researchers have discovered that the scaly-foot snail, otherwise known as the sea pangolin, is the first species at risk of extinction due to potential deep sea mining by humans. The research is published in Nature Ecology & Evolution. The scaly-foot snail. Chrysomallon squamiferum, also known as the... Read more →


New database to speed creation of innovative steels

Researchers from the National University of Science and Technology (MISIS) in Russia have developed a database that will help create new grades of steels. This will speed up the process of creating innovative steel grades with specified strength and ductility allow at least 10 times, which will allow manufacturing car... Read more →


Adamas: China, US and Japan drove 73% of electrified vehicle battery nickel deployment in May 2019

In May 2019, 73% of all nickel metal equivalent (NME) deployed in passenger electrified vehicle batteries globally went into vehicles sold in China, the US and Japan, collectively, according to Adamas Intelligence’s latest ‘EV Battery Nickel Monthly’ report. In total, the amount of NME deployed globally in May 2019 increased... Read more →


Researchers in Hong Kong have used biodegradable organic methanesulfonic acid (MSA) to leach valuable metals from waste LiCoO2 powders for battery material regeneration. Under the optimal conditions, leaching efficiencies of lithium and cobalt are achieved at nearly ∼100% and ∼100%, respectively. A paper on their work appears in Journal of... Read more →


Adamas: lithium deployment in passenger EVs up 47% y-o-y in May 2019

In May 2019, 47% more lithium carbonate equivalent (LCE) was deployed globally in batteries of passenger EVs than the same month the year prior, according to Adamas Intelligence’s latest subscription-based “EV Battery Lithium Monthly” report. This increase in LCE deployment was driven primarily by two factors, Adamas said. Global sales... Read more →


Adamas: deployment of nickel-rich cathode chemistries drives battery nickel demand higher in May

In May 2019, 57% more nickel metal equivalent (NME) was deployed globally in batteries of new passenger EVs than the same month the year prior, according to Adamas Intelligence’s latest “EV Battery Nickel Monthly” report. Over the same period, the amount of NME used in li-ion batteries (primarily in the... Read more →


Hyundai Motor and Saudi Aramco to collaborate on hydrogen, advanced non-metallic materials and future technologies

Hyundai Motor Company signeda memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Saudi Arabian Oil Company (Saudi Aramco). The MOU provides a framework to accelerate expansion of a hydrogen ecosystem in the Korean and Saudi Arabian markets, and to explore the use of advanced non-metallic materials in various fields including the automotive industry.... Read more →


Leading UK scientists set out resource challenge of meeting EV targets by 2050

UK Natural History Museum Head of Earth Sciences Prof Richard Herrington and fellow expert members of SoS MinErals (an interdisciplinary program of NERC-EPSRC-Newton-FAPESP funded research) recently wrote a letter to the UK Committee on Climate Change pointing out that meeting UK electric car targets for 2050 would require production of... Read more →


Researchers from the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory have demonstrated an advanced friction extrusion manufacturing process to produce nanostructured rods and tubes directly from high-performance aluminum alloy powder in a single step. Using a novel Solid Phase Processing (SPP) approach, the research team eliminated several steps that are required during conventional... Read more →


In a comprehensive joint study, Henkel and RLE International have examined and validated the potential of high-performance structural foam for lightweighting in automotive body and closure parts. The study has revealed that fiber-reinforced polymer components with structural foam ribbing and reinforcements can save more than 40 kg of weight per... Read more →


DOE to invest $32M in computer design of materials

The US Department of Energy (DOE) will invest $32 million over the next four years to accelerate the design of new materials through use of supercomputers. Seven projects will be supported, three led by teams at DOE National Laboratories and four by Universities. The teams are led by Argonne National... Read more →


Russian researchers find simple, efficient way to strengthen aluminum-based composite materials

Scientists from the Russian National University of Science and Technology MISIS have doped aluminum melt with nickel and lanthanum to create a material combining benefits of both composite materials and standard alloys: flexibility, strength, lightness. A paper on their research is published in Materials Letters. Uniaxial tensile testing of the... Read more →


In collaboration with SGL Carbon, Chinese automotive manufacturer NIO has developed prototypes for battery enclosures made of carbon-fiber reinforced plastic (CFRP) for its NIO high performance electric vehicles. The battery enclosure is extremely lightweight, stable and safe. The entire battery enclosure, including the batteries, can be changed at swapping stations... Read more →


Researchers at Ruhr-Universität Bochum (RUB) and Max-Planck-Institut für Eisenforschung in Düsseldorf report on a new class of electrocatalysts that is theoretically suitable for universal use. These high entropy alloy nanoparticles are formed by mixing close to equal proportions of five or more elements, and may push the boundaries of traditional... Read more →


Teijin Limited announced that its Sereebo carbon fiber reinforced thermoplastic (CFRTP) has been selected by General Motors (GM) for use in select pickup box applications. This is the first use of CFRTP for structural parts in a high-volume production vehicle. Sereebo will be used to manufacture the optional CarbonPro pickup... Read more →


New class of high entropy materials for energy storage applications

A team led by researchers from the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) in Germany is proposing a new class of high entropy materials for energy storage applications. In a paper in the RSC journal Energy & Environmental Science, they report on multi-anionic and -cationic compounds prepared by facile mechanochemistry using... Read more →


United States Steel Corporation (USS) will invest more than $1 billion to construct a new sustainable endless casting and rolling facility at its Edgar Thomson Plant in Braddock, Pa., and a cogeneration facility at its Clairton Plant in Clairton, Pa., both part of the company’s Mon Valley Works. The cutting-edge... Read more →


Novelis Inc. has developed the first aluminum sheet battery enclosure solution to address customers’ needs in the rapidly growing electric vehicle and battery markets. Available globally, this design for next-generation automobiles provides a more sustainable mobility solution in battery electric vehicles, a market that is expected to more than triple... Read more →


Volkswagen Group collaborating with Minespider to use blockchain to trace raw material back to point of origin; pilot project on lead

The Volkswagen Group and blockchain specialist Minespider are collaborating to optimize raw material supply chains, eliminate sources of error, and guarantee social and ecological standards. The two will set up a pilot project to achieve transparency in the the global supply chain for lead. Starting in April, Volkswagen will work... Read more →


Aluminum Association introduces first material designation system for 3D printing; “Purple Sheets”

The Aluminum Association released its first new material registration record in nearly 20 years. The “purple sheets” will provide clear chemical designations for aluminum powder used in 3D printing, also known as additive manufacturing. The purple sheets are the newest addition to the Aluminum Association’s long-running “rainbow sheet” series, which... Read more →


Volkswagen Group joins collaboration for responsible sourcing of strategic minerals using blockchain; focus on cobalt

Volkswagen has joined an open industry collaboration for the responsible sourcing of strategic minerals that will use blockchain technology to increase efficiency, sustainability and transparency in global mineral supply chains. Ford Motor Company, Huayou Cobalt, IBM, LG Chem and RCS Global announced the collaboration earlier this year. (Earlier post.) Joining... Read more →


DOE to award nearly $5.2M for High Performance Computing for Energy Innovation; manufacturing, materials and mobility

The US Department of Energy (DOE) has announced nearly $5.2 million for a new solicitation (FBO423-19) under the High Performance Computing for Energy Innovation (HPC4EI) Initiative, the umbrella program for the HPC4Manufacturing (HPC4Mfg), HPC4Materials (HPC4Mtls), and HPC4Mobility programs. The new funding opportunity seeks qualified industry partners to work collaboratively with... Read more →


A team of engineers has built and tested a radically new kind of airplane wing, assembled from hundreds of tiny identical pieces. The wing can morph to control the plane’s flight, and could provide a significant boost in aircraft production, flight, and maintenance efficiency, the researchers say. Wing is assembled... Read more →


ArcelorMittal investigates hydrogen-based direct reduction of iron ore for steel production; CDA

To permanently reduce CO2 emissions, steelmaker ArcelorMittal has developed a low-emissions technology strategy, which targets not only the use of alternative feedstocks and the conversion of CO2 emissions, but also the direct avoidance of carbon (Carbon Direct Avoidance, CDA). This year, the Group intends to launch a new project in... Read more →


Adamas: China’s average rare earth oxide production costs will increase by approximately 4% annually

A new report from Adamas Intelligence—Rare Earth Pricing Outlook to 2030—forecasts global rare earth supply and demand to 2030 under two scenarios to examine how oxide prices will evolve in the years ahead. With increased government oversight and an ongoing crackdown on illegal rare earth production in China, Myanmar and... Read more →


The first prototype carbon fiber MonoCell, the tub that forms the main structure of McLaren’s cars, has been shipped from the company’s new £50-million (US$66-million) innovation and production center in Yorkshire to the McLaren Production center (MPC) in Woking, Surrey. Codenamed ‘PLT-MCTC - 01’—which stands for ‘Prototype Lightweight Tub, McLaren... Read more →


In January 2019, the Chinese market saw 253% more nickel deployed in passenger EV batteries than the same month the year prior, according to a model-by-model build-up using Adamas Intelligence’s EV Battery Capacity and Battery Metals Tracker. The accelerated deployment of battery nickel in China, due primarily to an ongoing... Read more →


Researchers identify cause of degradation for NMC nickel-rich cathode materials

A team of scientists including researchers at the US Department of Energy’s (DOE) Brookhaven National Laboratory and SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory have identified the causes of degradation in nickel-rich layered cathode material (LiNi1‐x‐yMnxCoyO2) (NMC) for lithium-ion batteries, as well as possible remedies. Their findings, published in the journal Advanced Functional... Read more →


Rechargeable lithium metal batteries with increased energy density, performance, and safety may be possible with a newly-developed, solid-electrolyte interphase (SEI), according to Penn State researchers. The SEI is key to the stabilization of lithium metal anodes for rechargeable batteries; however, the SEI is constantly reforming and consuming electrolyte with cycling.... Read more →


BASF Ultramid being used for fuel cell components for Mercedes GLC F-CELL

In close cooperation with Joma-Polytec and Mercedes-Benz Fuel Cell GmbH, a subsidiary of Daimler AG, BASF’s engineering plastic Ultramid has successfully been used to manufacture a number of fuel cell system components. This solution is being used as standard in the new Mercedes GLC F-CELL, which combines a fuel cell... Read more →