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100 Billion Tons Of Rare Mineral Found, Can Be Used For Tech

Japan’s Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology has recently made a discovery that may reduce technology dependency from China. The discovery was made when 78 ‘very large’ deposits were found at the bottom of the Pacific Ocean, near Hawaii.

The material weighed between 80 billion – 100 billion metric tons of material with similar properties to yttrium. The material is expected to be easy to get out and is low on the dangerous uranium and thorium that affects such deposits.

So what can these minerals be used for exactly? Well, they could get the phosphors and other materials needed for displays, such as LCDs as well as their LED backlighting. The materials can also be used for smartphone batteries, hybrid cars, and have a wide range of uses.

The discovery proves beneficial for a number of reasons, most importantly, it alleviates the pressure of just Russia and China for providing for the world’s production materials. Second, it gives the United States a bargaining chip to use when dealing with other countries.

No clue on when exactly the material will be brought to surface, but I expect that we will begin using this material by sometime next year. Hopefully this will also lower the price of LCDs and smartphone batteries.

Photo Courtesy of Xuni
Photo Courtesy of MacNN