U.S. DOE invests US$75M to develop critical minerals supply chain research facility

By Staff report   

News critical minerals mining Office of Fossil Energy and Carbon Management U.S. Department of Energy

The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Fossil Energy and Carbon Management has announced that it will invest US$75 million towards a project for the development of a critical minerals supply chain research facility, as part of President Biden’s Investing in America agenda.

The project will be funded by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. According to a recent press release for the DOE, its purpose is to “strengthen domestic supply chains, help to meet the growing demand for critical minerals and materials, and reduce reliance on unreliable foreign sources.”

“Critical materials are the building blocks of technologies needed for the transition to a net-zero clean energy future and for our national security,” said Brad Crabtree, Assistant Secretary of Fossil Energy and Carbon Management (FECM). “To help ensure a secure domestic supply, DOE is investing in projects to help accelerate the production of essential critical minerals and materials from a diverse set of sources, working with other agencies and the private sector as part of a government-wide strategy.”

The DOE stated that the new facility is expected to support other on-going government initiatives, such as the Critical Materials Collaborative and Critical Materials Innovation Hub, and the overall DOE-wide critical mineral and material goals of diversifying and expanding supply, developing alternatives, improving efficiencies across the supply chain, and enabling a circular economy. 

The DOE stated that the National Energy Technology Laboratory will lead the Minerals to Materials Supply Chain Facility (METALLIC) project, which includes participation from eight other DOE national laboratories (Ames National Laboratory, Argonne National Laboratory, Idaho National Laboratory, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and Pacific Northwest National Laboratory).

“METALLIC will bring together expertise of the nine national laboratories to amplify the impact in critical minerals and materials research, development, demonstration, and deployment by providing rapid validation optimization, and commercialization of critical minerals and materials production and utilization technologies,” the DOE stated.

FECM’s Office of Resource Sustainability will manage the selected project. Additional details about the selected project can be found here.

To read the full release from the U.S. Department of Energy, click here.

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