Archive

Posts Tagged ‘Lanthanum’

China gains chokehold over U.S. defense

February 12, 2011 Comments off

WorldNetDaily

An alarming new report says the United States is choosing to rely on China for the rare earth metals that are critical for the production of America’s strategic defense weapons, giving the communist nation a chokehold on the ability of the U.S. to defend itself, according to Joseph Farah’s G2 Bulletin.

While the U.S. has the world’s second-largest reserves of the substances, instead of facilitating production, it has left China to take over the market – it controls some 97 percent of the global sales of these elements, according to the report.

The American Security Project, in fact, says the U.S. is “completely reliant on China” for rare earth metals for the production of the nation’s most critical weapons systems.

“Rare earth metals are essential for the United States’ military and economic well-being,” the report said. “Yet, the U.S. has been particularly lax when it comes to securing the supply of these metals.

“The U.S. has gone from the world’s top producer and supplier of rare earths to Read more…

The What? And Why? Of Rare Earth Metals

February 10, 2011 1 comment

Over the past few months, there’s been a buzz surrounding rare earth metals. These are metals such as europium, lanthanum, neodymium and 14 others found in small concentrations attached to other metals and resource deposits. They’re actually not that rare, just expensive and difficult to pull out of the ground.

These naturally occurring elements are essential in everything from wind turbines to lasers to iPads.

Rare earths are a conundrum for the environmentally conscious—they hold the key to green energies but create toxic waste when being separated away from other elements. “Just one wind turbine generating 3 megawatts of electricity requires 600 kilograms of rare earths for its magnets,” a source told the United Kingdom’s Guardian newspaper.

Electric and hybrid cars can contain more than twice as much rare earth metals as a standard car. This image from the NY Times breaks down how these metals make up critical elements of a Prius.

Currently, China controls 97 percent of the world’s production of rare earth metals. In October 2010, the country cut exports of the metals by 70 percent, disrupting manufacturing in Japan, Europe and the U.S., and sending the prices of these metals up 40 percent.

China currently controls production but the country only has 37 percent of Read more…