Magnetic future, dynamic Dysprosium

Published at Dec 15, 2017, in Features

The world is currently experiencing something of a technological revolution. Although it may not be explicitly perceptible, slowly the technologies that we relied upon in the 20th century are being replaced by 21st century counterparts.

We are seeing this in energy generation, with technologies like solar and wind power starting to replace more traditional technologies such as the burning of coal or peat. More and more new cars hitting the road contain electric motors rather than oil burning engines. It appears that the start of 21st century may be dominated by advanced digital and electric technologies.

Such a shift in core technologies is also likely to herald a shift in the key commodities used to manufacture the core technologies.

Already, producers are scrambling to secure access to materials like lithium, graphite and cobalt, to build energy dense batteries and other technologies; as a result, prices for such commodities are incredibly strong.

However, due to the increasingly specific properties required to manufacture increasingly high-technology, there are likely to be supply shortages in many rare commodities.

One of these is likely to be Dysprosium. Dysprosium is a rare-earth element that is desirable due to its ability to maintain strong magnetism at high temperatures. Whilst this may not sound particularly exciting, it means that the element is critical in the production of electric vehicles, wind turbines, miniaturised electronics, radiation detection equipment, refractive glass material, digital data storage amongst other technologies.

In fact, in 2011 the United States Department of Energy stated that due to the wide range of its current and projected uses, together with the lack of any immediately suitable replacement, makes dysprosium the single most critical element for emerging clean energy technologies.

Western Australian Premier Mark McGowan is also positive on the element, stating recently that “This is a mineral that’s going to play a big part in the world’s future,”

The vast majority (historically around 99 percent) of the world’s production comes from China. Some of this production circumvents government regulation. Regardless, there are significant environmental concerns about the Chinese production of rare-earth minerals, and already authorities are starting to crack down – causing reductions in the supply of key elements.

There is very little dysprosium production outside of China, and already pragmatists are seeking to expand it.

This article is General Information and contains only some information about some elements of one or more commodities and or financial products. Those considering engaging with any commodities or financial products mentioned in this article should always seek independent financial advice from a licensed financial advisor before making any financial decisions.

S3 Consortium Pty Ltd (CAR No.433913) is a corporate authorised representative of LeMessurier Securities Pty Ltd (AFSL No. 296877). The information contained in this article is general information only. Any advice is general advice only. Neither your personal objectives, financial situation nor needs have been taken into consideration. Accordingly you should consider how appropriate the advice (if any) is to those objectives, financial situation and needs, before acting on the advice.

Conflict of Interest Notice

S3 Consortium Pty Ltd does and seeks to do business with companies featured in its articles. As a result, investors should be aware that the Firm may have a conflict of interest that could affect the objectivity of this article. Investors should consider this article as only a single factor in making any investment decision. The publishers of this article also wish to disclose that they may hold this stock in their portfolios and that any decision to purchase this stock should be done so after the purchaser has made their own inquires as to the validity of any information in this article.

Publishers Notice

The information contained in this article is current at the finalised date. The information contained in this article is based on sources reasonably considered to be reliable by S3 Consortium Pty Ltd, and available in the public domain. No “insider information” is ever sourced, disclosed or used by S3 Consortium.

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