Scientists found the way of extracting rare metals

Scientists found the way of extracting rare metals

June 24, 2021

The underwater drone will operate in the Arctic at low temperatures and great depths.

#ARCTIC. #SIBERIA. THIS IS TAIMYR. At the Siberian Federal University, scientists have invented an apparatus capable of extracting and transporting rare earth minerals in the Arctic.

One of the rare earth metals is niobium

According to the regional government, the device is capable of operating at great depths at low temperatures and poor visibility.

The drone can mine fossils without communication with the ship. To lift the device on board, you just need to hook it up with the hinges.

“The device is a split grab bucket and a gas generator. The bucket consists of two halves – jaws with teeth, tightly connected to each other using a special drive. It was supposed to lower this device from the side of the ship where, in the opinion of geologists, the necessary minerals are. The sensor of the device, reacting to contact with the bottom, gives the command to close the jaws of the bucket – so the rock is trapped inside. At the same time, the gas generator is triggered, filling the flexible cavity of the device with gas. It pushes the autonomous complex to the surface of the water like a float”, said Pavel Katyshev, associate professor of the Siberian Federal University’s Mining, Geology and Geotechnology Institute Opencast Mining Department, one of the authors of the development.

Now scientists are working to make the complex as energy-efficient as possible, this should reduce production costs.

The team of inventors has already received five patents for the ‘capsule’. The plans are to test the drone in the laboratory.

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Text: Angelica Stepanova, Photo: open sources

June 24, 2021

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