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National Clean Energy Business Plan Competition 2014

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REEcycle

University of Houston

REEcycle is the first company to profitably reclaim neodymium and dysprosium, two critical rare earth elements necessary for a low carbon economy. Neodymium and dysprosium are essential for manufacturing more productive electric motors and more efficient wind turbines, reducing our dependence on coal, oil and natural gas to produce electricity.

REEcycle is the first company ever to profitably reclaim two critical rare earth elements, neodymium and dysprosium, from discarded electronics. REEcycle’s disruptive, patented process is the solution to recycling neodymium and dysprosium. This innovative process has been long sought after by manufacturers including Siemens, Hitachi and Honda Motors for clean energy applications.

Neodymium and dysprosium are used to manufacture neo-magnets, which are indispensable for personal electronics and critical for efficiencies in green technologies. Electric motors are up to 50 percent more productive when using neo-magnets, reducing electricity demand. Wind turbines using neo-magnets are 20 percent more efficient, decreasing our dependence on coal, oil and natural gas used to produce electricity.

REEcycle first purchases disposed of neo-magnets from electronics recycling companies. These neo-magnets are then passed through REEcycle’s patented process, extracting a mixture of neodymium and dysprosium locked inside. This revolutionary technology results in minimal waste and requires a heat level of just 212°F, making it significantly less expensive than other processes. After these elements are extracted, they are then sold to REEcycle's customers.

By recovering the critical rare earth elements, neodymium and dysprosium, REEcycle reduces U.S. dependence on an unreliable foreign supply and creates the infrastructure necessary for a low carbon economy. 

REEcycle is the winner of the Caltech First Look West Competition.

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