Science & Tech

Scientists from the CSIR have discovered rare-earth deposits in AP

Scientists from Hyderabad’s National Geophysical Research Institute (NGRI) discovered rare-earth elements (REEs) in the Anantapur area of Andhra Pradesh.

What are Rare-Earth Elements?

  • Lanthanum, cerium, praseodymium, neodymium, yttrium, hafnium, tantalum, niobium, zirconium, and scandium are examples of rare-earth elements (REEs).
  • Because of their distinctive magnetic, optical, and catalytic capabilities, these elements are frequently employed in modern electronics like as cellphones, computers, jet planes, and other items.
  • These elements are critical components in a variety of electronic systems and have industrial uses in industries such as imaging, aerospace, and defence.

SHORE Project and REE Discovery

  • The discovery was made as part of a project financed by the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) named “Shallow Subsurface Imaging of India for Resource Exploration.” (SHORE).
  • In “whole rock analyses,” NGRI scientists discovered enriched concentrations of REEs.
  • Drilling at least a kilometre deep will aid in determining the constancy of the elements’ presence underneath.

The importance of the finding

  • The discovery of REEs in the Anantapur district is noteworthy since these elements are in great demand worldwide and have a restricted supply.
  • Because of their increasing demand and restricted supply, rare earth elements (REEs) have become a source of geopolitical worry.
  • China presently accounts for more than 80% of global production and exports of rare-earth elements (REEs).
  • The country possesses considerable REE reserves and has heavily invested in mining and processing facilities.
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