Found in the Earth’s crust, rare earths are critical elements used in cars, consumer electronics, computers, communications, clean energy and defense systems.
There are 17 elements that are considered to be rare earth elements (REE). Fifteen of those elements are in the lanthanide series and two additional elements share similar chemical properties. They include scandium, yttrium, lanthanum, cerium, praseodymium, neodymium, promethium, samarium, europium, gadolinium, terbium, dysprosium, holmium, erbium, thulium, ytterbium and lutetium.
The big driver for rare earths is magnets, which are used in disk drives, electric motors in cars, wind turbines and other products. Magnets represent one-fifth of the world’s consumption of rare earths. Other end products include alloys and petroleum.
Rainbow Rare Earths Ltd (LON:RBW) is a mining company focussed on production from, and expansion of, the high grade Gakara Rare Earth Project in Burundi, East Africa. With in-situ grades in the range of 47-67% Total Rare Earth Oxide (TREO), Gakara is one of the world’s richest rare earth deposits.