News and Events


On May 9, the Committee on Earth Resources of the National Academies held a workshop on Critical Minerals and Materials in Washington, D.C. In his keynote talk, Viola Vestal Coulter Foundation Chair, Rod Eggert, discussed how the field of critical minerals and materials has evolved in the ten years since publication of the National Academies’ Minerals, Critical Minerals and the U.S. Economy. Eggert chaired the study committee that prepared the report. In his talk, Eggert noted how the chemical and physical properties provided by a number of minor metals enable modern engineered materials; described advances in methods for evaluating which mineral resources are “critical” and why this determination inherently depends on who you are, where you are and when you ask; and emphasized the essential roles of education and research in enhancing primary resource production, improving recycling and reuse of materials, and developing new and better materials.

On January 22-23, Colorado School of Mines hosted the 5th winter meeting and 3rd annual forum for postdoctoral and student researchers. Despite a difficult winter travel day, it was the largest group to date with nearly 100 participants. The event featured 19 oral presentations and 29 posters. Laboratories represented were Florida Industrial and Phosphate Research Institute, Ames, Idaho, Lawrence Livermore, and Oak Ridge. The other participants came from Momentum Technologies, UC-Davis, Yale, Purdue, SUNY-Buffalo, Rutgers, University of Tennessee, and Colorado School of Mines. Speakers included Mines President, Paul Johnson, CMI Director, Alex King, CMI Deputy Director, Rod Eggert, Mines Associate Vice President for Research, Ryan Richards, and Yale Professor Emeritus, Thomas Graedel. This year also included sessions for the newly established CMI Leadership Academy.  

Oral presentation winners were Kevin Lyon from Idaho National Lab, and Zachary Sims from Oak Ridge National Lab.  The poster contest winners were Mary Case from Idaho National Lab and Tomer Fishman from Yale University.

Mines student participants were Kalen Rasmussen from Civil and Environmental Engineering, Tom Boundy, Bridger Hurley, Philip Keller, Fangyu Liu, Alex Norgren, Brandon Ott, Partaksh Sidhu, Hunter Sceats, Nathanael Williams and Victoria Vaccarezza from the Kroll Institute for Extractive Metallurgy (KIEM), and Alexander Campbell, Tisilile Igogo, Haeyeon Kim, Yuzhou Shen and Braeton Smith from the Division of Economics and Business.
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11/29/2017 The CSM Mining Competition Team hosted an evening at the museum featuring the CMI exhibit
11/17/2017 Ben Geller's CMI science lesson at the Colorado Science Conference for Professional Development
10/30/2017 CMI at the 21st Century Energy Transition Symposium 2017 at Colorado State University
09/27/2017 Rod Eggert talked about CMI at the Society of Women Engineers (SWE) meeting at Mines
06/25/2017 REU Students Learned about CMI and Critical Materials
06/28/2017 Denver School of Science and Technology Students Learned about CMI
06/01/2017 Southern Ute Tribe Students Visited the CMI Museum Exhibt
On February 9-10, Colorado School of Mines hosted the Critical Materials Institute Winter Meeting and 2nd Annual Forum for Postdoctoral and Student Researchers.  More than 85 CMI team members from national laboratories, universities, industry, and the Department of Energy (DOE) gathered in Golden. Speakers included DOE Office of Advanced Manufacturing Director Mark Johnson, Mines Vice President for Research and Technology Transfer Tony Dean, CMI Director Alex King, Ames Laboratory Scientist Ikenna Nlebedim, and Mines President Paul Johnson. 
Thirty-seven postdocs and graduate students presented CMI research from Mines, Purdue, UC-Davis, Florida Polytechnic, Yale, Lawrence Livermore National Lab, Idaho National Lab, Iowa State and Ames Lab. Mines student presenters included Tom Boundy, Brett Carlson, Dylan Everly, Philip Keller, Fangyu Liu, Alex Norgren, Hunter Sceats and Victoria Vaccarezza from the Kroll Institute for Extractive Metallurgy (KIEM), and Maxwell Brown, Sadie Fulton, Brett Jordan, Haeyeon Kim, and Braeton Smith from the Division of Economics and Business. Congratulations to poster contest winners Mary Case from Idaho National Laboratory, and Hunter Sceats from Colorado School of Mines.
Professional Photos Thursday - Friday
Additional Photos Wednesday - Friday

During the week of November 28, 2016, Coulter Professor and CMI deputy director Rod Eggert participated in a series of international events in Brussels, Belgium.
He was part of the US delegation at the EU-US-Japan Trilateral Conference on Critical Materials and presented the poster “Material criticality: Comparing China, the EU, Japan and the USA,” based on work he and his graduate students (Sadie Fulton, Jose Hofer, Brett Jordan, Haeyeon Kim, Sul-Ki Lee and Braeton Smith) carried out during the fall semester.

He participated in the European Institute of Innovation and Technology’s meeting on strengthening education in the raw-materials sector.

He delivered the lecture “The Fragility of Rare-Earth Supply Chains” at NATO headquarters as part of a half-day course on rare earths and other critical elements, an activity of NATO’s Science and Technology Organization.
EB Professor Rod Eggert spoke on the topic of critical raw materials as one of several lecturers in the international school on Materials for Energy and Sustainability, the 69th course of the International School of Solid State Physics, July 13-19, in Erice, Sicily. More than 70 graduate students and postdoctoral researchers from Europe, Africa, the Middle East and North America gathered to learn from experts on global issues in energy and the environment and the resulting issues for materials used in energy technologies. Specific topics ranged from climate change and carbon sequestration; to conventional and emerging energy technologies, including solar, wind, geothermal, nuclear, and fuel cells; to energy storage, buildings and smart grids. The course was organized by the European Materials Research Society, the European Physical Society, the EuroSunMed Project, the Italian Physical Society and the Materials Research Society.

Attendees of the 2016 summit held in Denver, June 13 to 16, ended their conference with a site visit to Colorado School of Mines and the Critical Materials Institute (CMI). The event was hosted by CMI’s Deputy Director, Rod Eggert. Tony Dean gave a welcome and overview of Mines, followed by presentations by Thomas Monecke and Rod Eggert. CMI Graduate Students from the Division of Economics and Business and the Kroll Institute for Extractive Metallurgy (KIEM) hosted lab tours in Hill Hall. Bruce Geller and Mandi Hutchinson led tours of the Geology Museum, highlighting the new critical materials exhibit. Event Photos

This webinar is based on a Congressional briefing organized by AGI on behalf of the Mineral Science & Information Coalition (3 March 2016). It addresses the efforts being taken at the federal level to ensure a steady supply of critical minerals and materials.
YouTube Speakers include:
Rod Eggert, Colorado School of Mines; Critical Materials Institute, Ames Laboratory
Lawrence D. Meinert, Mineral Resources Program, U.S. Geological Survey, Steven M. Fortier, National Minerals Information Center, U.S. Geological Survey
Meeting Photos
Museum Exhibit Reception Photos

On February 3-4, more than ninety researchers from the Critical Materials Institute (CMI) gathered at Mines for the CMI Winter Meeting. Attendees came from the Ames, Idaho, Lawrence Livermore and Oak Ridge national laboratories, as well as the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), Iowa State, Purdue, University of California – Davis, University of Tennessee, Yale and of course Mines.

The main event was the first CMI conference highlighting research by postdoctoral associates and graduate students, with more than forty presentations by young researchers from across CMI including fifteen from Mines.  CMI research aims to accelerate innovation that will assure supply chains for raw materials essential in clean energy technologies — spanning basic and applied science, engineering and complementary economic and supply chain analysis.

The fifteen presenters from Mines are carrying out research in the Division of Economics and Business, the Kroll Institute for Extractive Metallurgy and the Department of Metallurgical and Materials Engineering.

The conference began with remarks from Mark Johnson, Director of DOE’s Advanced Manufacturing Office, and CMI Director Alex King.  A highlight of the meeting was a reception in the Geology Museum, at which Mines President Paul Johnson dedicated a new exhibit on critical materials. Mines Professor Rod Eggert and CMI’s Maureen Allen organized the meeting, with significant assistance from the Office of Special Programs and Continuing Education.

Japan, the European Union, and the United States have collaborated for a number of years on research and education related to critical raw materials and their uses in emerging technologies.  Professor Rod Eggert represented the Critical Materials Institute (CMI) at three meetings in Japan during the week of October 26-30.

The first two meetings in Tokyo—the 5th Trilateral EU-US-Japan Conference and the 3rd Japan-US Bilateral Meeting on Rare Metals—provided opportunities for researchers and policy makers to share information and research priorities with counterparts from the other regions.  Professor Eggert was a member of the U.S. delegation at both meetings and delivered summary comments on behalf of the U.S. delegation at the trilateral meeting.

The Critical Metals Symposium at Tohoku University in Sendai, the site of catastrophic tsunami damage in 2011, brought together researchers not only from Japan, the EU and the United States but also China, Korea and India.  Professor Eggert gave an invited talk, “The Dynamic Nature of Metal Resources: The Case of Rare Earths.”  He also participated in a post-conference field trip to two materials processing facilities in northern Honshu, Japan’s main island: the Kosaka smelter, which processes both primary mineral concentrates and secondary industrial wastes to recover more than 10 major and minor metals, and a Dowa recycling plant, which disassembles end-of-life television sets, air conditioners, refrigerators and washing machines as a first step in recovering and recycling the constituent materials of these household appliances.

The NATO Science and Technology Organization has a continuing interest in rare-earth materials because of their essential uses in defense applications.  Professor Rod Eggert represented the Critical Materials Institute (CMI) at the October meetings of the Applied Vehicle Technology Panel, in Prague, Czech Republic.  He spoke on the current (and volatile) market environment for rare earths.  He also is part of an international team developing a two-day lecture series on global supply chains for rare earths, including markets, geoscience, process engineering, materials engineering and manufacturing, and recycling.  The lecture series will be delivered in 2016 in several locations in North America and Europe.



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Last Updated: 09/05/2018 08:40:19