REY-Rich Mud: A Deep-Sea Mineral Resource for Rare Earths and Yttrium

Kentaro Nakamura, Koichiro Fujinaga, Kazutaka Yasukawa, Yutaro Takaya, Junichiro Ohta, Shiki Machida, Satoru Haraguchi, Yasuhiro Kato

研究成果: Chapter

20 被引用数 (Scopus)


This chapter focuses on newly discovered extensive deposits of deep-sea mud containing high concentrations of rare-earth elements and yttrium (REY). The deep-sea REY-rich muds are found in pelagic region of the Pacific Ocean and very recently also in the Indian Ocean. REY-rich muds are characterized by the following five advantages: (1) tremendous resource potential by virtue of their wide distribution, (2) high REY concentrations with significant heavy REE enrichment, (3) a stratiform distribution that allows relatively simple and cost-effective exploration, (4) very low concentrations of radioactive elements such as Th and U, and (5) ease of extraction of REY by acid leaching. These features demonstrate that the REY-rich mud could constitute a highly promising REY resource for the future. A system to mine REY-rich muds is also presented. This system can be developed based on a system developed and tested for sulfide-rich muds in the Red Sea and manganese nodules in the Pacific Ocean, although pressurized air-lift system will be needed to lift REY-rich muds from very deep water.

ホスト出版物のタイトルHandbook on the Physics and Chemistry of Rare Earths
出版社Elsevier B.V.
出版ステータスPublished - 2015


名前Handbook on the Physics and Chemistry of Rare Earths

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • 化学 (全般)
  • 材料科学(全般)
  • 地球化学および岩石学
  • 物理学および天文学(全般)


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