Review of rare earth mineral processing technology

CIM Journal, Vol. 4, No. 1, 2013
J. Zhang Saskatchewan Research Council, Saskatoon, SK C. Edwards AMEC Americas Ltd., Saskatoon, SK

The versatility and specificity of
rare earth elements (REEs) have led to their use in an ever-increasing variety
of applications in new technologies; consequently, demand for REEs has increased
significantly. However, separating REEs safely and effectively is a complex and
expensive process. This paper presents a review of REE mineral processing
technologies, providing an update on current capabilities in REE mineral
processing and REE extraction from the major commercially valuable REE-bearing
minerals such as bastnaesite, monazite, and xenotime, as well as the
ion-absorption type of REE deposits.
Keywords: Rare earth, Mineral processing, Bastnaesite, Monazite, Xenotime, Ion-absorption–type rare earth, Gravity separation, Magnetic separation, Flotation
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