For their final event, the REProMag project partners took part in the World Resources Forum 2017 on 24 and 25 October in Geneva, Switzerland. WRF 2017 addressed ideas and conditions behind the acceleration of the Resource Revolution, as well as potential obstacles and opportunities that it will bring for governments, businesses, academia and the civil society.
Together with a poster exhibition at the Horizon 2020 booth organised by FORAM Project and sharing of experience about better management of critical raw materials on both days, the REProMag partners organised on 25 October a workshop titled Resource Efficient Production of Rare-Earth (RE) Magnets – the EU Project REProMag.
After the presentation of project goals, technologies and results, an expert panel took place during this workshop to discuss topics related to magnet recycling and resource efficient magnet production from all perspectives of the material stream, i.e. from the view of a magnets producer, a manufacturer of components using magnets, a recycling company as well as the end user. Additionally, aspects considering political boundary conditions, raw material supply and the ecological footprints were discussed.
The workshop participants could afterwards discuss directly with the project partners during the showcasing of SDS permanent magnets, industrial demonstrator with integrated SDS permanent magnets, the REProMag 3D printer, as well as posters about the characterisation of magnetic materials and the alignment of magnetic parts during production.
All participants to the discussions see a clear need for increasing the recycling rates of permanent magnets from currently <1% onto the level of other technology metals like Silver, Palladium and Platinum, where recycling rates of 30% are realised today. This is necessary to ensure a stable and secure raw materials supply for green energy, mobility and further applications and to reduce the overall ecological footprint of permanent magnet production. As the technological solutions are now available on the lab scale, it is very important to make the next steps on the way to a real circular economy by introducing magnetic labelling and classification concepts as well as upscaling the recycling technologies for larger future quantities. All project partners will keep on working on this beyond the end of REProMag.
A special thank you for joining our expert panel to: