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U.K. Rare Earth Firm Pensana Joins Equinor to Look at Recycling Magnets

  • Pensana and Equinor to work on low-energy recycling method
  • Rare earths are key for high-tech products, green transition
A wind turbine nacelle during production at a factory in Bremerhaven, Germany.

A wind turbine nacelle during production at a factory in Bremerhaven, Germany.

Photographer: Krisztian Bocsi/Bloomberg

As governments look to secure supplies of crucial rare earth materials, the U.K.’s Pensana Plc signed an agreement with energy company Equinor ASA to look at developing a low-energy method for recycling magnets.

The accord is for magnets from wind turbine nacelles -- the central hub that allows it to generate electricity -- to be recycled using hydrogen at Pensana’s hub at the Saltend Chemicals Park. The rare earth company is targeting recycling an annual market of 4,000 tons of end-of-life magnets.