Cobalt Facts

Cobalt is a shiny metal that is a byproduct of the mining of nickel and copper. It's atomic symbol is Co and atomic number is 27. Cobalt is found primarily in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and Zambia. The DRC is the largest producer of cobalt in the world, producing an estimated 60% of the world's supply. It also has the largest reserves of cobalt with about 50% of the world's reserve of cobalt. Cobalt is used in two key sectors, military and industry. In the military sector it is vital for the functioning of jet engines and in the commercial industry sector it is critical for rechargeable batteries.
  • Identified global terrestrial reserves of cobalt amount to an estimated 25 million tons
  • There is enough land reserves of cobalt to last 100 years
  • DR Congo produces more cobalt than all other countries combines
  • 49% of Cobalt demand is driven by batteries in cell phones and electric cars
  • One third of all cars in the world could be electric in 20 years
  • About 45% of the cobalt consumed in the United States was used in superalloys, mainly in aircraft gas turbine engines
  • China is the leading supplier of cobalt to the US but China gets much of its cobalt from Congo-Kinshasa
  • China is the world leading consumer of cobalt
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Sources:
https://www.cobaltinstitute.org/
https://minerals.usgs.gov/minerals/pubs/mcs/2017/mcs2017.pdf
https://qz.com/1087495/cobalt-miners-are-leaving-dr-congo-for-canada-and-europe-to-meet-demand/
https://techcrunch.com/2017/01/01/no-cobalt-no-tesla/
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/congo-child-labor-apple-tesla-cobalt/