ACS Symposium: Separation Science for a Sustainable Future

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By Tanya Pietrass, NSF CHE

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ACS Symposium: Separation Science for a Sustainable Future

  1. 1. ACS Presidential Symposium Ensuring the Sustainability ofCritical Materials and Alternatives Tanja Pietraß Deputy Division Director, NSF CHE Philadelphia, August 21, 2012
  2. 2. Future Challenges
  3. 3. The Growing Need for Rare Earth Elements HEVs, PHEVs, and EVs contain from 20 to 25 pounds of rare earth elementsSource: http://www.molycorp.com/products/rare-earths-many-uses/advanced-vehicles/
  4. 4. Minerals, Critical Minerals, and the U.S. Economy National Research Council, 2008 HEVs, PHEVs, and EVs contain from 20 to 25 pounds of rare earth elementsSource: http://www.nap.edu/openbook.php?record_id=12034&page=R1
  5. 5. 2.96 Million lb of Mineral Resources per Person (Lifetime) in the U.S.Source: Chemical and Engineering News, June 25, 2012, p. 12-18
  6. 6. Recycle Rates of Primary MetalsSource: Chemical and Engineering News, June 25, 2012, p. 12-18
  7. 7. Recycle Rates of Platinum Group Metals and Other Elements In < 1% Li < 1% P = 0% Rare Earths < 1 %Source: Chemical and Engineering News, June 25, 2012, p. 12-18
  8. 8. ChallengeExtraction, Refinery and Recovery:Need for Development of Chemical andEngineering Separation ProcessesNeed for Collaboration between Chemists andChemical Engineers
  9. 9. 2010 Reauthorization of the America Competes Act SEC. 509. SUSTAINABLE CHEMISTRY BASIC RESEARCH“The Director shall establish a Green Chemistry BasicResearch program to award competitive, merit-basedgrants to support research into green and sustainable chemistry which will lead to clean, safe, and economical alternatives to traditional chemical products and practices.”
  10. 10. Science, Engineering and Education for Sustainability (SEES)To advance science, engineering, and education to inform thesocietal actions needed for environmental and economicsustainability and sustainable human well-being. SEES Portfolio of Programs: • Arctic SEES • Dimensions of Biodiversity • Sustainable Chemistry, Engineering, and Materials (SusChEM) • Climate Change Education Partnerships • Ocean Acidifcation • Sustainable Energy Pathways (SEP) • Coastal SEES • Partnerships for International Research & Education (PIRE) • Sustainability Research Networks (SRN) • Decadal & Regional Climate Prediction Using Earth System Models (EaSM) • Research Coordination Networks (RCN) • Water Sustainability and Climate (WSC) • Dynamics of Coupled Natural & Human Systems(CNH) • SEES Fellows
  11. 11. SusChEM Priorities of NSF CHE*• Replace rare, expensive and/or toxic chemicals with earth abundant, inexpensive and benign chemicals• Economically recycle chemicals that can not be replaced such as phosphorus and the REE’s• Seek new (non-petroleum based) sources of important raw materials• Discover new environmentally friendly chemical reactions and processes that require less energy water and organic solvents than current practice• * DMR (MPS), EAR (GEO), CBET & CMMI (ENG)
  12. 12. ChallengeExtraction, Refinery and Recovery:Need for Development of Chemical andEngineering Separation ProcessesNeed for Collaboration between Chemists andChemical Engineers
  13. 13. Separation Science and Engineering NSF SusChEM Workshop, January 17-19, 2012: Identifying fundamental research needs to increase the sustainability of chemical and materials processing Identified the key role of separations science and engineering in the sustainable extraction, recovery, recycling and replacement of critical metals.• Replace rare, expensive and/or toxic chemicals with earth abundant, inexpensive and benign chemicals• Economically recycle chemicals that can not be replaced such as phosphorus and the REE’s• Seek new (non-petroleum based) sources of important raw materials• Discover new environmentally friendly chemical reactions and processes that require less energy water and organic solvents than current practice
  14. 14. Separation Science and Engineering Recommendations (courtesy of Eric Peterson)• Multidisciplinary problem• CHE-CBET work more closely together• DOE-AMO and DOE-BES work more closely with NSF• Within NSF include BIO and SBE• Applications of hydrometallurgy and bio-based processes including separations, etc.• Joint workshops with DOE and other agencies• Chemistries for mediation and remediation of waste piles• Enhanced measurement • Testing/spectroscopy • Enhanced specificity/sensitivity • Reliable standards – i.e. RAL at Idaho for DOE collaborations • XRF, LIBS, Laser-based
  15. 15. Separation Science and Engineering Recommendations (courtesy of Eric Peterson)• Fundamental process development vs. optimization• Fundamental selective extraction o e.g. laser isotope separation• Additional basic research to improve similar processes• Water recovery/recycling “closed plant”• Life cycle planning for manufacturing-recycling
  16. 16. Thank YouWhere Discoveries Begin

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