The rare earths consist of 15 elements; lanthanum(La), cerium(Ce), praseodymium(Pr), neodymium(Nd), promethium(Pm), samarium(Sm), europium(Eu), gadolinium(Gd), terbium(Tb), dysprosium(Dy), holmium(Ho), erbium(Er), thulium(Tm), ytterbium(Yb) and lutetium(Lu). All of the rare earths except promethium(Pm) occur naturally along with scandium(Sc) and yttrium(Y) which are not rare earths but are normally found in the same ore deposits. The rare earths are not rare. They are just unfamiliar to most people. As an example of their abundance, lutetium(Lu) is 200 times more abundant than gold(Au).
Rare earths are essential for such familiar technologies as cell phones and computer screens, and are also found in many emerging technologies, including alternate energy sources such as hybrid cars and rechargeable batteries. Many defense applications, including missile guidance systems, mine detection, anti-missile defense and communications systems, also require rare earth elements.
Because of the large number of high-technology and defense applications that require rare earths, dependable, quality resources (such as the suppliers Polaris uses) are important to the U.S. economy and critical to continued manufacturing and production.
Polaris supplies the following rare earth elements.
Click on each one for more information about the element and its applications.