Platinum Group Metals (PGMs), contained in this list, are among the least abundant of the Earth’s elements and were classified as materials whose substitution is currently extremely difficult and also, their recycling rate is very low. A recent study estimates that Europe is the region with the highest demand of PGMs in the world, with an annual demand of 40t, worth €1.14 billion. The supply of PGMs is currently ensured mostly by primary sources (72%) coming from mines & recycling, and it cannot meet the global demand. PGMs demand (up to 80%) is driven mainly by the emission control catalysts market which is expected to reach €6 billion by 2019.
Key target of the PROMETHEUS project is to demonstrate in large scale the substitution up to 67% of the PGMs used in automotive catalysts. A novel catalyst developed and tested under the EU-funded project NEXT-GEN-CAT (Project No. 280890) will be used. Successful market introduction of PROMETHEUS technology will definitely generate a significant impact on PGM demand in Europe and boost European automotive and emission control catalyst markets.
Substitution of 67% of PGMs used in automotive catalytic converters can result in saving up to 40 tonnes of PGMs per year, which is about twice the current deficit between global demand and supply. In European basis, around 9 tonnes of PGMs per year will be saved (~25% of the current EU demand). Given the extensive application platform of PROMETHEUS technology, the EU’s dependency on PGMs could be potentially reduced by up to 60%. The mentioned reduction in PGMs demand will result in up to €250 million saving for the European industries that can invest in Research, Development and Innovation and job growth.