Rare Earth Elements
American tech innovation is dependent upon reliable access to secure supplies of rare earth elements.
The COVID-19 pandemic exposed vulnerabilities in the global supply chain for critical goods and minerals, which are used to produce semiconductors and other critical technologies.
- Rare-earth elements are essential to produce many high-tech devices—cell phones, computer hard drives, electric and hybrid vehicles, and flat-screen monitors and televisions—as well as components of defense systems.
- As China began to dominate the global market and to limit exports for rare-earth elements in the early 2000s, the United States and other countries have sought to increase their own domestic mining and refining capabilities. Currently, there is only one active rare-earth mine in the United States.
- The U.S. must pursue multiple and geographically diverse supply options to create a secure supply chain for critical minerals.
America’s future technological innovation increasingly will be dependent upon reliable access to secure supplies of certain key minerals and other strategic materials.Senior Advisor
Interactive Periodic Table
Visit Purdue’s interactive Rare Earth Element periodic table to explore the location, purposes, and facts about all Rare Earth Elements.