Ucore Rare Metals Inc. (TSX.V: UCU) (OTCQX: UURAF) Finishes Demo Plant Commissioning for REE Processing, Turns to DOD Project and Commercial Facility Build-up

  • Canadian metals supply company Ucore Rare Metals Inc. recently announced completion of the third and final stage of its Demonstration Plant commissioning process for the separation of critical rare earth element (“REE”) metals used in various important technologies
  • The commissioning process is a key part of the company’s demonstration of its proprietary RapidSX(TM) REE processing technology as it prepares for commercial production
  • Ucore is at the forefront of companies attempting to break China’s virtual monopoly on REE production and separation processes by developing American-based supply chain solutions
  • The company will now focus on proving its RapidSX(TM) technology in response to U.S. and Canadian government-funded projects seeking a direct techno-economic comparison between conventional solvent extraction (“CSX”) and RapidSX(TM)
  • Ucore will also begin work on building its commercial operation for REE separation using RapidSX(TM) in Louisiana this month

Strategic metals supply chain innovator Ucore Rare Metals (TSX.V: UCU) (OTCQX: UURAF) recently completed the commissioning of its superior technology being put to the test for commercial use in separating heavy and light rare earth elements (HREEs, LREEs, or REEs) that are key ingredients in permanent magnets helping to drive modern computerized products.

Ucore has been racing to launch commercial REE separation production at its Louisiana facility to fill a vital unmet need for American-based supply operations that will ensure the flow of the components making up technologies used in a range of critical applications, from cell phones to fighter jets. Given the REE industry’s near-total current dependence on Chinese companies, whose mining and metal element separation operations can be controlled by Chinese government policy, companies and government leaders around the world have been concerned about building secure access to REEs should international tensions disrupt their current supply.

The company’s commercial demonstration program at an Ontario facility, with commercialization partner Kingston Process Metallurgy Inc. (“KPM”), has been establishing the capabilities of Ucore’s trademarked RapidSX(TM) processing solution for use in the mining industry in head-to-head comparisons with the existing standard CSX process, and will now turn to demonstrating its ability to satisfy government interests while completing the Louisiana operation.

Ucore has received millions of dollars in funding from the U.S. Department of Defense and the Government of Canada for qualifying heavy and light critical magnet materials with automotive, wind energy and consumer original equipment manufacturers (“OEMs”) that further national interests.

“The objectives of this program are to establish a direct techno-economic comparison between conventional solvent extraction and RapidSX(TM) for separating heavy and light rare earth elements and to establish RapidSX(TM) technology for commercial deployment in North America,” Ucore Vice President & Chief Operating Officer Mike Schrider, P.E., stated in the company’s Dec. 21 announcement about the commissioning process (https://ibn.fm/hF78d).

China has made significant changes to its rules guiding exports of several metals this year amid growing tensions between the Asian nation and Western countries over the control of critical minerals and China’s need to protect its national interests and market dominance.

China introduced permit requirements for the export of computer chipmaking materials gallium and germanium in August, and then similar processes governing the export of several types of graphite beginning Dec. 1. China expanded its ban on exporting technology for the separation of critical REE materials Dec. 21, adding regulations regarding select REE magnet metals, as reported by Reuters (https://ibn.fm/90How).

“Recent events in China are a remarkable development,” Ucore Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Pat Ryan stated Dec. 27 (https://ibn.fm/YFAHu). “Ucore’s focus on the separation and refining of these critical materials is of increasing strategic importance to the burgeoning North American rare earth supply chain. Our recently commenced US DoD Demonstration Program could not come at a more important time.”

Ucore’s 80,800 square-foot brownfield REE separation and oxide production facility in Louisiana will work its way up to an estimated throughput of 7,500 metric tons of total rare earth oxides (“TREOs”) per year. Work on building the Louisiana operation is expected to begin this month.

For more information, visit the company’s website at www.Ucore.com.

NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to UURAF are available in the company’s newsroom at https://ibn.fm/UURAF

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