Lynas secures $120m contract to build HRE separation facility in US


Lynas USA, a wholly owned subsidiary of Lynas Rare Earths (Lynas), has secured a contract, worth $120m, with the US Department of Defense (DoD) to build a commercial Heavy Rare Earths (HRE) separation facility in the US.

Once built, this facility is claimed to become the first of its kind in the country.

This follow-on contract will enable Lynas to have an operating footprint in the country, including the manufacturing of separated Heavy Rare Earth products to complement its Light Rare Earth product suite.

The company worked with DoD for the Phase I contract announced in July 2020 for a Heavy Rare Earth separation facility in the US.

Construction costs, as submitted in June last year, for the HRE facility are fully covered by this DoD contract.

This contract is sponsored and funded by the US DoD Industrial Base Analysis and Sustainment (IBAS) programme.

The company intends to co-locate the Heavy Rare Earths separation facility with the proposed Light Rare Earth separation facility that was announced in January 2021 and sponsored, and half funded by the US DoD Title III, Defense Production Act office.

After a detailed site selection process, the facility is expected to be built within a current industrial area on the Gulf Coast of Texas.

It is expected to become operational in the financial year 2025.

A mixed Rare Earths carbonate generated from material sourced at the Lynas mine in Mt Weld, Western Australia will serve as the feedstock for the facility.

The company also plans to work with third party providers to source other suitable feedstocks.

Lynas Rare Earths CEO and managing director Amanda Lacaze said: “The development of a U.S. Heavy Rare Earths separation facility is an important part of our accelerated growth plan and we look forward to not only meeting the rare earth needs of the U.S. Government but also reinvigorating the local Rare Earths market. This includes working to develop the Rare Earths supply chain and value added activities."


Image: This facility is expected to become the first of its kind in the country. Credit: marwed from Pixabay.

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