A--Rare Earth Element Identification and Characterization of Coal and Coal By-Produ
Department of Energy, Federal Locations | Published October 5, 2015
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL), intends to issue a competitive solicitation DE-SOL-0009067 as an unrestricted full and open competition for Identification and Characterization of Coal and Coal By-Products Containing High Rare Earth Element Concentrations. Anticipated work assignments for this service contract would support activities across all NETL sites, in Morgantown, WV, Pittsburgh, PA and Albany, OR. The resulting contract will be a multiple award fixed price contract with a base performance period of eighteen (18) months. The anticipated award date for the resulting contract will be in first quarter fiscal year 2016. Any questions should be directed to the Contract Specialist George.firstname.lastname@example.org, all correspondence shall be received no later than 20 October 2015 at 1600 ET.
1. The services sought are to identify, locate, field sample, and chemically analyze U.S. domestic coal and coal by-product solid and/or liquid materials that contain high rare earth element (REE) concentrations, specifically materials containing total REEs at concentrations ≥300pm. This effort is being conducted in support of potential technology development for the separation and recovery of REEs. The project, Identification and Characterization of Coal and Coal By-Products Containing High Rare Earth Element Concentrations, shall consist of the following five tasks:
Task 1 Project Management Task 2 Field Site Identification Task 3 Field Site Sampling Task 4 Field Sample Material Analysis Task 5 Interim and Final Reports.
Task 1 Project Management, shall address monitoring of the overall and daily project performance and technical accomplishments, achievement of milestones and deliverables, maintaining/tracking budget spending, and completion of required reporting.
Task 2 Field Site Identification, shall address the rationale for specific field site sampling. In this Task, the Contractor shall demonstrate an understanding of the coal and related material REE concentrations and phase mineralogy that has been documented in the open publication literature (i.e., journals; conferences; etc.), as well as potential REE field site locations as addressed in state and U.S. Geological Surveys, etc. The Contractor shall provide rationale in a Project Sampling Plan to NETL as to the domestic location that sampling shall be undertaken during conduct of this project, as well as the type of material sampled (i.e., run of mine coal, roof rock, overburden clays, fly and of bottom ashes from demonstration and/or commercial coal combustion and/or gasification facilities, ash holding ponds, shale interlayer formations, etc.). The Contractor shall prepare and present the Project Sampling Plan to NETL, 60 days after start of contract, obtaining concurrenc e of site sampling locations prior to initiating the field sampling effort in Task 3.
In Task 3 Field Site Sampling, the Contractor shall address the manner in which field materials shall be sampled, and the anticipated quantity of materials sample. Sampling of materials is preferred within a 200-300 mile radius of the Contractor?s location, but may be undertaken at alternate domestic field locations. Sampling and removal of high REE-containing material shall be undertaken to provide a statistically significant representation of material at each location site, in particular where materials are identified to contain ≥ 300 ppm total REE (i.e., 30 samples at each location; cumulative value reported as X?2ϭ). All materials shall be described in terms of field site location (i.e., county and/or state, as appropriate, not disclosing sensitive or proprietary information), the nature of the material as either having been generated commercially (i.e., combustion or gasification facility, etc.) or naturally occurring, and if non-proprietary, an historica l genesis with respect to the material?s formation. Sampling that is conducted shall be used to supplement information contained in DOE NETL?s EDX public database (https://edx.netl.doe.gov/ree/).
Nominally, 100 discrete materials (preferably 100-200 samples; run of mine coal, roof rock, overburden clays, fly and of bottom ashes from demonstration and/or commercial coal combustion and/or gasification facilities, ash holding ponds, or shale interlayer formations, etc.) containing ≥300 ppm total REEs shall be characterized in Task 4 Field Sample Materials Analysis. All characterization of the field sampled materials shall be reported, which includes analyses conducted at the field site location where materials were selected and removed. In addition, post-field laboratory characterization shall be described in terms of the analytical procedures (i.e., ASTM standards, if utilized, and sample preparation procedures, etc.) and techniques, equipment utilized (i.e., model number; etc.), and the resulting REE concentrations with standard deviation reported for each element on a dry, non-ash basis relative to the starting material. Proximate and ultimate, and ash analy ses of each material is required. The Contractor shall identify the mineralogical phase speciation for the REE-containing elements, address the analytical procedures (i.e., ASTM standards, equipment utilized, sample preparation procedures, etc.), and report REE mineralogical phases and concentrations relative to the starting sampled material. The Contractor shall conduct microscopy analyses (i.e., scanning electron microscopy (SEM)/energy dispersive x-ray analysis (EDAX), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), auger spectroscopy, etc.), on select sampled materials to further demonstrate and/or confirm the phase/morphology of the REE-containing matrix. NETL shall provide the Contractor a formatted template for reporting materials characterization analyses such that these data can be entered into the NETL EDX public database.
In Task 5 Interim and Final Reports , the Contractor shall provide to DOE NETL monthly Status Summary Reports addressing activities and analyses completed, participate in bi-monthly technical status update discussions, and submit a Final Report 90 days after completion of the contract, that details all information generated during conduct of Tasks 1 through Task 4 (i.e., site location and material selection; strategy for site location; characterization techniques/methodology and results; etc.), shall confirm that materials contain ≥300 ppm (preferably 1,000-2,000 ppm; materials containing