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Penn State's Center for Critical Minerals to receive $2.1M for pilot program

Funding to aid research and development to recover rare earth elements, other critical minerals

By Jimi Werner


These minerals are prevalent in essential components of everyday life, including batteries, cellphones, automobiles, appliances and electronic devices. Critical minerals also play a central role in defense and homeland security applications, making them vital to national security and domestic economic growth.  
Funding for the pilot system was supported by U.S. Rep. Guy Reschenthaler (R-Pa.), U.S. Rep. Glenn “GT” Thompson (R-Pa.) and U.S. Sen. Bob Casey (D-Pa.).  

“I secured this community project funding for Penn State because this cutting-edge project to extract critical minerals from acid mine drainage presents Pennsylvania with a rare opportunity to assume national leadership in an industry growing more important by the day,” said Casey. “Thanks to $2.1 million from the fiscal year 2023 spending bill, Penn State can move forward with innovative research that could help grow our economy, protect our environment, and safeguard our national security.” 

The pilot system will help extract these much sought-after resources, provide environmental benefits, and show the viability of a full-scale plant to help Pennsylvania become a leader in this burgeoning industry.  

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