Chapter Life Cycle Inventory (LCI) Approach Used for Rare Earth Elements (REEs) from Monazite Material, Considering Uncertainty
This study describes the development of life cycle inventory (LCI) to rare earth elements (REEs) based on the secondary sources, conducted according to ISO 14040 (2006) guidelines. Monte Carlo (MC) simulation with the Crystal Ball (CB) spreadsheet-based software was employed to stochastic modeling of life cycle inventory. The number of simulations was set at 10,000. The study scope considered LCI associated with REE concentrate production from New Kankberg (Sweden) gold mine tailings production (input gate) to the final delivery of rare earth elements (end gate) to reprocessing/beneficiation for rare earth element recovery. For the presented case, lognormal distribution has been assigned to scandium (Sc), dysprosium (Dy), yttrium (Y), lanthanum (La), cerium (Ce), praseodymium (Pr), neodymium (Nd), samarium (Sm), europium (Eu), gadolinium (Gd), holmium (Ho), erbium (Er), terbium (Tb), thulium (Tm), ytterbium (Yb), and lutetium (Lu). The MC simulation (10,000 trials) for the sum of analyzed REEs used for CB is presented in the form of statistics. Sensitivity analysis (SA) presented in the form of tornado charts and spider charts was performed. The results from this study suggest that uncertainty analysis is a powerful tool that should support and aid decision-making and is more trusted than the deterministic approach.
Keywordsrare earth elements (REEs), life cycle inventory (LCI), life cycle assessment (LCA), Monte Carlo (MC) simulation, Crystal Ball® (CB), sensitivity analysis (SA), uncertainty
Publication date and place2019