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Ucore buys rights to rare earths technology

United States – US firm Ucore Rare Metals has entered into an agreement with IBC Advanced Technologies to acquire the exclusive rights to its SuperLig molecular recognition technology (MRT) for rare earth separation and recycling applications, in addition to processing applications for tailings or mining waste.

Under the terms of the deal, Ucore will pay a US$ 2.9 million one-time licensing fee to IBC. ′The payment is subject to the delivery by IBC of a fully operational rare earth SuperLig pilot plant and due diligence review,′ Ucore notes.

The plant will be built at IBC′s SepraMet subsidiary in Houston, Texas. The companies will establish a joint venture for the purpose of marketing and purveying SuperLig products and services. Ucore will have a controlling interest (60%) in the business, and will use the technology royalty-free to supply markets worldwide.

′Rare earth operations have long sought a clean and cost-effective alternative to traditional solvent extraction technology, and our belief is that the alternative is MRT,′ comments UCORE′s chief operating officer Ken Collison. ′The SuperLig process is environmentally friendly, and integrates well with our standards of exceptional environmental stewardship and economic efficiency.′

The technology is already used extensively in non-rare earth mining applications, adds Jim McKenzie, president and ceo of Ucore.

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