The 1st International Symposium on Processing of Critical Minerals (Critical Minerals '24) is organised by MEI with help from our Advisors,  Alan Butcher and Jan Cilliersand is sponsored by Promet101, AECI Mining ChemicalsCapstone Copper, Steinert, Petrolab, and Conundrum.

Our media partners are International Mining and Minerals Engineering. Our industry advocates are the Critical Minerals Association and the Coalition for Eco-Efficient Comminution (CEEC).

Critical minerals refer to a select group of elements and minerals that are vital for industrial processes and the production of high-tech goods. Their significance arises from their role in enabling various technologies that have become integral to contemporary life. Commonly cited examples of critical minerals include rare earth elements (REEs), lithium, cobalt, and graphite. 

The growing demand for critical minerals is primarily driven by the energy transition and the rapid expansion of technologies such as smartphones, electric vehicles, wind turbines, and solar panels. As societies transition towards cleaner and more sustainable energy solutions, the need for these minerals has intensified. However, the extraction and processing of many critical minerals often involve complex geological conditions, high environmental impact, and challenges in terms of supply chain reliability.

As the demand for critical minerals increases, so do concerns about their environmental and social impact. The extraction of these minerals often involves practices that can harm ecosystems and local communities. Efforts are being made to develop more sustainable mining techniques and recycling processes to mitigate these impacts.

One solution to the critical minerals challenge lies in efficient recycling practices. Many electronic devices and products contain significant amounts of these minerals, making them potential sources for future supply. Researchers and industries are working on improving recycling technologies to extract critical minerals from discarded products, reducing the need for new mining activities.

This conference will explore innovative methods and flowsheets for processing critical minerals from primary and secondary sources and by recycling, particularly from waste electrical and electronic equipment, the most challenging aspect in aiming for a circular economy.


MEI Conferences

1 Freeman Collins Drive, Trescobeas Road
Falmouth, Cornwall, UK