The US Department of Energy allocated $120 million to make sure near-term supply of five rare earth metals, dysprosium, terbium, europium, neodymium and yttrium, will be ensured. These materials are essential components of advanced wind turbines, solar cells as well as electric vehicles and energy efficient lighting. For this purpose a new Energy Innovation Hub is launched, lead by the Ames Laboratory in Iowa, called the Critical Materials Institute and modelled after the successful Bioenergy Research Centers, founded under president Bush. DoE: “The new Hub will focus on technologies that will enable us to make better use of the materials we have access to as well as eliminate the need for materials that are subject to supply disruptions“.
[wikipedia] – rare earth elements