The permit, issued by the United Kingdom Environment Agency, enables LCM to produce rare earth metals in accordance with the highest of national environmental, health and safety standards.
Ian Higgins, Managing Director, Metals and Alloys at LCM said, "The detailed design and production of the first two metal making cells, which have now been received by LCM, was carried out by a leading United Kingdom-based foundry technology company. The initial trials of the metal making system are scheduled to commence in May 2012. Our plan is to have six cells in full operation by the end of 2012 at a level of production that will fully supply the requirements for LCM's recently commissioned strip casting furnace."
Jim Engdahl, President and Chief Executive Officer of GWMG said, "The process of fused salt electrolysis of rare earth oxides to metals increases the existing metal and alloy making capability at LCM into bulk production of metals, principally for the permanent magnet alloy business. This represents one more step toward GWMG being the most fully integrated rare earth company in the world. That, in turn, translates into additional self-sufficiency for our production cycle and certainty of supply for GWMG's global customers."
Great Western Minerals Group Ltd. is an integrated Rare Earths processor. Its specialty alloys are used in the battery, magnet and aerospace industries. Produced at the Company's wholly owned subsidiaries Less Common Metals Limited in Birkenhead, U.K. and Great Western Technologies Inc. in Troy, Michigan, these alloys contain aluminium, nickel, cobalt and Rare Earth Elements. As part of the Company's vertical integration strategy, GWMG also holds 100% equity ownership in Rare Earth Extraction Co. Limited, which owns a 74% equity interest in the Steenkampskraal Mine. In addition to an exploration program at Steenkampskraal, GWMG also holds interests in four active Rare Earth exploration and development properties in North America.
Press Release – Marketwire - March 5, 2012