Ligand Facilitated Bioaccumulation: Biomining of Rare Earth and Other Critical Metals from Electronic Wastes

ARPA-E Project Image


Program:
Special Projects
Award:
$1,100,000
Location:
Berkeley,
California
Status:
ACTIVE
Project Term:
01/01/2021 - 12/31/2022

Project Innovation + Advantages:

The University of California Berkeley will develop a highly selective, environmentally friendly bacterial platform to recover rare earth elements (REEs) from complex electronic waste (E-waste) streams. Feedstocks range from simple (magnet shavings) to complex matrix (printed circuit board recycling waste and used mobile devices). The team will engineer a single bacterial species that acquires REEs from solid feedstocks and converts them to REE minerals at a neutral pH without harsh acids or organic solvents. The team will couple synthetic biology with bioengineering to enhance REE-leaching, uptake, and storage. It will use inexpensive and readily available methanol as the carbon and energy source to support bacterial growth.

Contact

ARPA-E Program Director:
Dr. Douglas Wicks
Project Contact:
Dr. Norma Martinez-Gomez
Press and General Inquiries Email:
ARPA-E-Comms@hq.doe.gov
Project Contact Email:
cecimartinez@berkeley.edu

Partners

University of California, Berkeley
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

Related Projects


Release Date:
01/09/2020