3 years ago

Rationally designed mineralization for selective recovery of the rare earth elements

Rationally designed mineralization for selective recovery of the rare earth elements
Takao Tani, Nobuhiro Ishida, Takaaki Hatanaka, Fumiaki Hayashi, Akimasa Matsugami, Hideki Takagi, Takamasa Nonaka
The increasing demand for rare earth (RE) elements in advanced materials for permanent magnets, rechargeable batteries, catalysts and lamp phosphors necessitates environmentally friendly approaches for their recovery and separation. Here, we propose a mineralization concept for direct extraction of RE ions with Lamp (lanthanide ion mineralization peptide). In aqueous solution containing various metal ions, Lamp promotes the generation of RE hydroxide species with which it binds to form hydrophobic complexes that accumulate spontaneously as insoluble precipitates, even under physiological conditions (pH 6.0). This concept for stabilization of an insoluble lanthanide hydroxide complex with an artificial peptide also works in combination with stable scaffolds like synthetic macromolecules and proteins. Our strategy opens the possibility for selective separation of target metal elements from seawater and industrial wastewater under mild conditions without additional energy input.

Publisher URL: http://www.nature.com/articles/ncomms15670

DOI: 10.1038/ncomms15670

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