Rare metals, with such exotic names as praseodymium, neodymium or promethium, are chemical elements present in very weak concentration in the Earth’s crust. They display fascinating magnetic properties and are extensively used in digital and so-called green technologies.
Alice Courvoisier of the University of York discusses where these metals are sourced; how they are refined; what are the properties that make them so useful; how sustainable their exploitation is and what are some of the related environmental costs and geopolitical issues.
Join Alice and prepare to marvel at what these elements can do - and to face the darker side of the digital revolution.
About the speaker
Dr Alice Courvoisier teaches Mathematics in the Department of Electronic Engineering at the University of York. Working with future engineers has sparked her interest for ethical and societal aspects of science and technology. Alice is a member of the Science and Technology Studies Unit (SATSU) and blogs at: ethicsinstem.blogspot.com.
Image credit: Praseodymium, Wikimedia Commons