Rare Earth Elements (REEs) are a set of 17 elements on the periodic table that are important to a modern economy because of their uses in most electronics. The problem with REEs is that they usually don’t form large enough deposits that can be mined for profit. Most of the rare earth element mines are in China, and then China exports them to the rest of the world.
• Magnets: used in applications including electric motors and power generator turbines.
• Batteries: commonly used in rechargeable batteries, used in all plug-ins and most hybrid vehicles.
• Metallurgy: Used to enhance performance of metals
• Lasers: used as gain medium of several types of laser.
• Phosphors: Chemicals used to produce light in tube displays, florescent tubes.