What is the problem with rare earth minerals?
Rare earth minerals are called rare earth minerals for two reasons.
Most people know that rare earth minerals are among the raw materials that are in production in lesser amounts and have lower volume in the distribution chain.
But, one of the reasons this is the case is not always that there are less of the minerals on planet earth. These raw materials, like scandium, monazite and palladium are not clumped together but very scattered around the world.
This is why luck is a big factor when it comes to finding these materials and being able to extract them from the ground. China is one of these countries where luck gave them a monopoly on a couple of different raw materials, due to their location.
A lot of technological advancements that are made nowadays, include quite a few of these rare raw materials. Think about EV’s and their batteries, or solar panels. In principle, the green energy transition relies on them.
What is the advancement of AI and the location raw materials?
To unearth the locations of these rare earth minerals, artificial intelligence has been created using data from the Mineral Evolution Database. This is the largest database of mineral species and localities.
AI has then tried to understand the correlation between locations and minerals to figure out where it is most likely to find these raw materials.
Its main goal is to understand how our planet was formed and what the history of its creation is. On the other hand, more advancement of these models could also be used in the industry to be able to waste less time and valuable earth trying to find the right spots to dig.
In its current use, the machine learning model has already found several areas where rare earth materials and lithium could be found.
How does AI affect raw materials investments?
The question is how this affects the market of raw materials. When rare earth minerals become easily obtainable, are they still rare?
It is a very difficult question to answer, as it is still impossible to call all the locations with 100% certainty. Therefore, they will not become absolutely attainable within minutes.
However, would the locations be known, more of these raw materials could come in the market, which could speed up a lot of industrial processes and clear shortages.
The biggest question that will affect the market is: Are these locations abundant?
With a bigger supply and a steady demand, the stock and investment market will surely be going into a decline. But we simply do not know if the rare raw materials are in abundance, even when we know the locations of where to dig.
Would it be found out that we still have a very limited supply, then the industry will not dig up everything at once. This will not cause the market to flood and will not particularly affect the market.
The prediction is that it will take quite a while until the AI will become so advanced that it could cause a market shift. But it is very important to keep track of the future of AI and its impact on the world and your investments.