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WVU awarded grant to develop critical mineral reserves

With a national reputation as a leader in rare earth extraction research, West Virginia University is poised to take another step in developing a domestic supply of rare earth minerals that are critical to national defense and U.S. economic security.

The U.S. Department of Energy’s National Energy Technology Laboratory has announced a $644,000 research grant to WVU to continue its research supporting DOE’s ongoing program to recover rare earth elements from coal and coal by-products. Since February 2016, the West Virginia Water Research Institute at WVU has led $5.6 million in research across four projects under that program, including $4.46 million in federal and $1.13 million in industry funds. The team’s research includes a current project to build a pilot scale processing plant on the WVU Evansdale campus