The companies plan to identify new sources of rare earth metals and create a recovery process to utilise the materials in new products.

AERC and GTP began working together in 2008 to develop a process to recover the rare earth materials from spent fluorescent lamps. AERC’s mercury retort process made it possible for GTP to work with and gather samples of retorted phosphor powder. Fluorescent lamps require mercury in conjunction with phosphor powder to illuminate and create light; however this mercury must be removed prior to recovering the rare earth metals.

“AERC is very excited to partner with GTP to recover the rare earth metals from recycled fluorescent lamps," said Lindsay Kissel, vice president of sales for AERC. "We are always looking for ways to improve our processes, recycle more efficiently and find new uses for our recycled materials. The recovery of the rare earth metals is one more way to lead the way with best practices in the industry and contribute to the reuse of rare materials.”