Last week started the official launch of a new European research project involving the recovery of critical materials inside hybrid and electric vehicles. The European Commission as part of their Horizons2020 initiative has created a new consortium called DEMETER, or Design and Recycling of Rare-Earth Permanent Magnet Motors and Generators in Hybrid and Full Electric Vehicles. This consortium is comprised of 15 doctoral fellows (see their bios on the member pages), 7 Beneficiaries and 3 Partner Organizations. The project will entail researching and implementing sustainable recycling routes for rare earth permanent magnets, developing prototypes of recyclable permanent rare earth magnets motors, and assisting with environmentally-focused magnet production.
Pictured below are those who are committed to the new research program. This ambitious program requires that students don’t just find innovative recycling routes and methods, but actually disseminate their findings to stakeholders and the discerning public. As is the case in a Marie Sklodowska-Curie actions project, it is required for the doctoral students and partner organizations to collaborate. This means that each student will embark on a 2-3 month secondment in partner universities and organizations to strengthen the knowledge sharing within this field and to achieve tangible results. Simply put, since the problem of recycling rare earth magnets has still not been solved, science must meet industry in order to tackle an economically viable and environmentally friendly solution with full force.
Despite these ambitious goals, we are optimistic that it will be a success and show the need to adopt new recycling routes in order to continue to use sustainable technologies to reduce emissions and conserve resources.
To supplement the researcher’s studies and gain professional experience, researchers will also be in charge of communication outreach and will be completing “soft” skill competency modules. Moreover, researchers and partners are international, bringing diversity of perspectives and ideas into the project. DEMETER held its kickoff event in Leuven, proving that the actors and researchers are diving right into the surrounding network and interested community in hopes of leaving a lasting positive impact on the hybrid and electric vehicle industry.
Now that we’ve launched, we can’t wait to connect. To follow us and our project updates please like us on Facebook, ETN-DEMETER. And follow us on Twitter or Instagram @ETN_DEMETER and LinkedIn at ETN DEMETER.