Latest Trending News

TDB Sanctions Funding to Boost Domestic Production of Neodymium Materials and Rare Earth Magnets

New Delhi: The Technology Development Board (TDB) under the Department of Science and Technology (DST) has sanctioned funding for M/s Midwest Advanced Materials Private Limited (MAM), Hyderabad, aimed at enhancing the domestic production of essential materials and technologies. The funding announcement was made today at the TDB Centre in New Delhi.

This strategic project focuses on advancing the commercial manufacturing of Neodymium materials and Rare Earth Permanent Magnets, which are integral components for e-mobility applications. Aligned with national priorities, the funded project aims to establish an integrated production module for Rare Earth (RE) magnets, starting with oxides. Utilizing a modified Metal Extraction method employing Molten Salt Electrolysis (MSE) technology, which incorporates an environmentally sustainable electrolysis process with proprietary cell designs, this initiative represents a critical stride towards sustainable technological advancement.

Neodymium (NdFeB) permanent magnets, vital for propulsion systems in electric vehicles and generators in renewable energy infrastructure, are forecast to witness substantial market expansion. This underscores the significance of indigenous production capabilities, aligning with international efforts to mitigate climate change and promote renewable energy sources, including solar and wind power.

The transfer of advanced technology from The Nonferrous Materials Technology Development Centre (NFTDC), an esteemed R&D institution under the aegis of the Ministry of Mines, Government of India, to Midwest Advanced Materials Ltd., has paved the way for the commercial production of Neodymium materials and Rare Earth Permanent Magnets. NFTDC’s expertise in advanced materials, particularly Rare Earths, alongside their proficiency in process development and equipment design, coupled with MAM’s strengths in mining, powder metallurgy, e-mobility, and project financing, constitute the foundation of this TRL-9 demonstration plant. The project aims for an initial production target of 500 tons per year (TPY) of magnets, with plans to scale up to 5000 TPA by 2030, highlighting a transformative stride towards self-reliance in critical technological domains.

In his speech, Dr. K. Bala Subramanian, Director of NFTDC, emphasized the project’s importance as a trailblazing initiative in India. He projected an annual production of 500 tons of magnets from 150–170 tons of oxide, marking a significant milestone for the country. This comprehensive scientific breakthrough, spanning from motors and finished magnets to rare earth oxide, is expected to significantly impact several high-tech industries, including smartphones, wind turbines, medical imaging devices, and electronic mobility. For this project, five specialized pieces of equipment have been meticulously designed to ensure optimal operational efficiency.

The project benefits from a much lower capital investment (CapEx) due to local plant and machinery design. With India Rare Earth Engineers Limited (IREL) supplying the raw materials, the project is more financially feasible regarding operating expenses. MAM aims to achieve a production target of 5,000 TPA annually by 2030, enhancing the project’s long-term profitability and value proposition. NFTDC will support MAM’s efforts in rare earths and other vital materials as a knowledge and technological partner.

Rajesh Kumar Pathak, Secretary of TDB, highlighted the project’s significance. This initiative marks India’s advancement in domestically manufacturing high-performance magnets, addressing national imperatives, and contributing to the global transition towards sustainable technologies in critical materials for e-mobility and clean energy.

Comments are closed.