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WVWRI Wraps Up Virtual Seminar Series

The West Virginia Water Research Institute (WVWRI) hosted a three-part virtual seminar series from December 2020 through February 2021 to share current research and remediation projects with interested outside organizations and the public.

The first session featured three research projects carried out by WVU researchers with funding from the United States Geological Survey (USGS) 104b program. These projects share the common focus of water quality and quantity. Presentations included:

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Save the Date for the 41st West Virginia Mine Drainage Task Force Symposium

The West Virginia Water Research Institute (WVWRI) is teaming up with the West Virginia Mine Drainage Task Force to host the 41st West Virginia Mine Drainage Task Force Symposium. The symposium is an opportunity for the Task Force to present information on new developments in mine drainage research, treatment and control practices. The symposium is scheduled for September 28th – 29th, 2021 with further details to come. Please visit the Task Force website to check for updates and learn more.

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WVWRI releases RFP for FY2021 USGS 104b funding

The West Virginia Water Research Institute (WVWRI) is requesting proposals for research expected to be funded March 1, 2021 through February 28, 2022. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), Department of the Interior, will sponsor the research. Faculty from all West Virginia colleges and universities are encouraged to submit proposals. Funding selected proposals is dependent upon the availability of funds. It is expected that 3-5 projects will be funded in the range of $10,000 – $20,000 each. It is expected that approximately $90,000 will be available for new projects in 2021.

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WVU researchers move rare earth elements technologies closer to production

The U.S. Department of Energy recently awarded a contract with a base award of $149,980 for a conceptual design. The contract includes one option period for a Feasibility Case Study, which if exercised will be $1,567,889.  West Virginia Water Research Institute’s project at WVU is focused on developing a domestic supply chain that uses the Institute’s technology to capture REEs as oxide powders that can be converted into the rare earth metals used by U.S. manufacturers.

Rare earth elements are important to today’s society because they allow electronic devices to be smaller, faster, and more energy efficient.  This makes REEs critical to national security and a major concern because China mines and exports most of the world’s REE supplies. Developing a new, U.S. source of REEs from AMD has been a priority for WVWRI since 2016. Their work has been funded by the U.S. DOE National Energy Technology Laboratory.

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WVU partners with Extreme Endeavors to mine rare earth elements from acid mine drainage

Article written by Veronica Ogbe for WDTV.

From decades of mining in West Virginia, over 40 percent of the states rivers are too polluted to be safely used for drinking water or to support aquatic life, according to Appalachian Mountain Advocates. Mike Masterman, owner of Extreme Endeavors, is partnering with WVU’s Water Research Institute to provide a solution that would benefit the environment and the economy. 

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The Rush for Rare

Article written by Debra McCown Thomas for Mining People Magazine.

The term “Rare Earth Elements” is somewhat of a misnomer. These elements – a group of 17 metals that are commonly used in producing electronics – aren’t actually all that rare. 

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How coal mine waste could help build your next phone

It aims to turn a major pollutant of streams and ponds – acid mine drainage – into badly needed minerals for everything from smartphones and electric cars to jet fighters and satellites.

If it works, at a price that can earn companies a profit, the process would provide a major incentive for companies to clean up waters and streams, cut costs for the mining industry, and plug a strategic hole for the United States, which currently imports most of those minerals from China.

Read Full Article: How coal mine waste could help build your next phone