The Australian Strategic Materials Corporation (ASM) produced 6 kilograms of key neodymium iron boron (NdFeB) alloys for permanent magnets at the Rare Metal Research Institute plant in South Korea. NdFeB is a rare earth permanent magnet alloy used in the world's strongest commercial magnets for a wide range of applications, from mobile phones to wind turbines. The NdFeB alloy is made of 200 kilograms of iron neodymium (FeNd) alloy produced by ASM at its metallization pilot plant in early November. The company’s manufacturing partners have certified the metal structure and proportion of the product (iron content is 67%, neodymium content is 32%, boron content is 1%) and confirmed that it is suitable for the production of rare earth permanent magnets.
The managing director said: "The successful production of this NdFeB alloy is an important milestone for the company, paving the way for the integration of the production of key rare earth permanent magnet alloys into our developing metal business." He also said that the next step is An additional 7 kilograms of this alloy is produced to convert into an initial permanent magnet sample, which is evaluated by the Korean magnet industry. ASM is also investigating the potential to develop higher-volume continuous metal production facilities in South Korea, including the production of more NdFeB alloys.After the news came out, ASM's stock price rose by 7% to $4.08, while the market value was approximately $453.6 million.
The company obtains metal for neodymium magnet products from its wholly-owned Dubbo project, which is a large underground polymetallic resource of zirconium, rare earth, niobium, ha, tantalum and yttrium located 25 kilometers south of Dubbo in midwestern New South Wales. The company's Korean team then used these metals to produce 200 kg of FeNd, a key rare earth alloy used to make sintered permanent magnets.
Sintered permanent magnets have high magnetic strength and heat resistance, which are essential for advanced clean technologies including electric vehicles.Compared with industry standard processes, the company's metallization process and pilot plant have significant environmental advantages and emit less energy.