Efforts to reduce our carbon footprint begin in mining and minerals lab
Category: academics Video duration: Efforts to reduce our carbon footprint begin in mining and minerals lab
"The fact of the matter is, is that to live in a sustainable climate, we need the critical minerals that we're doing the research on here," says Graduate Research Assistant Kris Strickland. "Without those, we can't have the solar energy, we can't have the wind energy, we can't have the electric vehicles that we're all pining for."
This is our off-site mining and mineral research facility. A lot of our graduate students work here and also for now until the new Holden is done, we hold our undergraduate lab class here. This particular Bede's already been through the planning process and we focus on mineral processing techniques and separation techniques on trying to purify or that we get out of the ground into the things that we want. So copper II phosphate, critical minerals like rare earth elements and things like that. That work happens here trying to make sure that we get the best separation possible so that we're using the resources that we get from the ground as effectively and efficiently as possible. Most of our students that work in this facility are going to be mining and mineral engineers from the mining Department here at Virginia Tech. And we work on projects that are federally funded, privately funded. Like literally I drop. The fact of the matter is, is that to live in a sustainable climate, we need the critical minerals that were doing the research on. Without those, we can't have the solar energy. Had to wind. Can I have the electric vehicles that were all pining for that we're all wanting so that we can be better and lower our carbon footprint. But to have all those things, we have to learn how to extract the rare earth elements. You have to learn how to be better at extracting copper from the ore in the ground that it's in. And we have to do all of those things to make that mission possible. So it really starts here in the mining process, and it starts here in our lab with mineral processing and getting the most out of the ground that we destroyed.