Chicago, Nov. 16, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — The Global Rare Earth Metals Leaching Chemicals Market size is estimated at USD 517 million in 2022 and is projected to reach USD 749 million by 2027, at a CAGR of 7.7% between 2022 and 2027, as per the recent study by MarketsandMarkets. The rare earth metals leaching chemicals market is driven by rising demand for electric vehicles, the discovery of new rare earth deposits, and increasing incentives by governments for renewable energy systems.
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List of Key Players in Rare Earth Metals Leaching Chemicals Market:
- BASF SE (Germany)
- OxyChem (US)
- Olin Corporation (US)
- Aurubis (Germany)
- Solvay S. A. (Belgium)
- UBE Corporation (Japan)
- LANXESS AG (Germany)
- Westlake Chemical Partners (US)
- Gujarat Alkalies and Chemical Limited (GACL) (India)
- Gujarat State Fertilizers & Chemicals Limited (GSFC) (India)
Drivers, Restraints, Opportunities and Challenges in Rare Earth Metals Leaching Chemicals Market:
- Drivers: Rising demand for electric vehicles
- Restraints: Environmental impacts of leaching chemicals for rare earth metals
- Opportunity: Rare earth metals recovery from secondary sources
- Challenge: Safety of workers in rare earth elements mining
Key Findings of the Study:
- Rare earth metals recovery from secondary sources and usage of green solvents in rare earth metal mining are key to market growth.
- Hydrochloric acid is expected to have the highest CAGR in the forecast period.
- The Asia Pacific to be the biggest market during the projection period.
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Rare earth elements are a group of 17 chemical elements that occur together. The group comprises yttrium and 15 lanthanide elements (lanthanum, cerium, praseodymium, neodymium, promethium, samarium, europium, gadolinium, terbium, dysprosium, holmium, erbium, thulium, ytterbium, and lutetium). These rare earth elements are present in small concentrations in mineral deposits (basanite and monazite) and ion clay.
Therefore, the leaching process is performed to recover rare earth metals from sources. In the leaching process, strong leaching agents that are required to separate and recover rare earth metals from their sources are known as rare earth metals leaching chemicals. These leaching chemicals are classified based on types into hydrochloric acid, sulfuric acid, nitric acid, ammonium sulphate, citric acid, and others. The increasing demand for rare earth metals in end-use industries such as automotive and clean energy and the growing chemical market in Asia Pacific will propel the growth of rare earth metals leaching chemicals in the forecast period.
Based on type, the hydrochloric acid segment accounted for the largest share (23.4%) of the rare earth metals leaching chemicals market, in terms of value, in 2021. Hydrochloric acid (HCl) is a strong mineral acid employed as a bleaching agent in the extraction of rare earth elements (REEs) from diverse minerals. It effectively dissolves the chemical bonds between REEs and ores like basanite and monazite. For example, in the leaching process of bastnaesite, a mild HCl solution is used to extract REE carbonate. The extracted material is then reacted with NaOH to convert REE fluorides to hydroxides, followed by leaching with HCl to produce rare earth metals. Alternative methods combine alkaline treatment with direct HCl leaching, skipping the initial leaching step. HCl is also utilized in in-situ leaching, a process where minerals are dissolved in place and pumped to the surface for recovery. This technology offers advantages like high resource recovery and adaptability. The demand for hydrochloric acid in rare earth metals leaching is on the rise due to its availability, strong acidity, and cost-effectiveness, driving its use in various REE extraction technologies.
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Based on region, Asia Pacific is the largest market for rare earth metals leaching chemicals. The region accounted for 76.9%, in terms of value, of the overall market in 2021. The Asia Pacific (APAC) region leads in rare earth metals leaching chemicals consumption due to surging demand in China, driven by industries like automotive and electronics. APAC is poised for rapid growth owing to China’s increasing industrialization and extraction activities. Expansion of production capacities in Australia, Malaysia, China, and India will further boost demand for these chemicals. The region benefits from industry collaborations, innovations, government investments, and robust economic growth, with APAC being the fastest-growing region in terms of population and economic expansion. Asia Pacific’s significance in global GDP and the region’s large population will drive demand for electric vehicles, electronics, and other products, supporting the rare earth metals leaching chemicals market. However, the rare earth metals leaching chemicals market may be affected by China’s strict zero-COVID policy and lockdowns, impacting the real estate sector. Growth forecasts for the region have been revised slightly downward, from 4.9% to 4.6% in 2023, according to the Asian Development Bank, which could also impact the market.
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