Thought for the month

“It is a general popular error to suppose the loudest complainers for the public to be the most anxious for its welfare.” Edmund Burke, politician (1729 – 97).

Monday, 7 May 2018

Rare mud

Mud, mud glorious mud are words from a song popular in my childhood. It may now be a Karaoke hit with a group of Japanese researchers. Deep sea mud near Minami-Tori-shima an atoll 800 miles off the coast of Japan appears to be a massive store of rare earth metals. The most promising 100 sq. km area is estimated to hold  1.2 million tons of rare-earth oxides which accounts for 62, 47, 32, and 56 years of annual global demand for Y, Eu, Tb, and Dy, respectively. The entire research area might be able to supply Y, Eu, Tb, and Dy for 780, 620, 420, and 730 years, respectively.

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