Medallion Resources Limited (CVE:MDL) (OTCMKTS:MLLOF), which aims to increasingly produce key magnet metals, revealed it had received inquiries from several rare-earth element (REE) refineries.
The firm wants to produce REEs via the processing of monazite tailings using feedstock sourced from the southeast of the US.
These REE refineries' inquiries to Medallion come against the backdrop of the recent US Department of Defense’s Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA), which sees the government looking for proposals to establish or enhance domestic light REE processing under the Defense Production Act (DPA).
READ: Medallion Resources' magnet metals plans advance as it hires engineer Stantec to find US processing plant site
The estimated government contribution for this project is up to US$40 million for accepted proposals and requires matching funding, noted the company.
"Medallion’s proposed US-based REE process plant is well-suited to provide a high-quality feedstock for separation by either existing or future refining facilities," it said in a statement.
"The Medallion plant will utilize monazite sand, a rare-earth element rich (>50%) by-product mineral which is abundantly available within the United States.
"The company’s proprietary process extracts a REE chemical concentrate from high grade monazite sand in a clean, safe and automated operation without the need for mining or upgrading."
Medallion’s product - a light rare-earth concentrate enriched in neodymium (Nd) and praseodymium (Pr) - is in short supply outside China. In fact, Beijing prohibits its export to ensure value-add stages are completed within China. The People's Republic currently controls around 85% of global rare-earth production.
Today, NdPr is commercially the most important and valuable of all the REEs as it's a key input to rare-earth, permanent magnets, which are also embedded in military equipment that includes the F-35 fighter, Tomahawk and Javelin missiles, Aegis-equipped destroyers, and smart bombs.
Such magnets are also used in the motors for electric vehicles (EVs) and other clean technologies.
"The Trump administration has expressed strong support for the US military to become less reliant on foreign-sourced materials and processing technology," said Medallion.
"A key area of concern has been the high concentration of supply of rare-earth products from China, and the lack of a robust US supply alternative in the short to medium term."
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