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GM is attracted to these new non-rare earth magnets for its EV motors

A Niron Magnetics employee takes quality measurements | Image: Sara Rubinstein for General Motors

General Motors is eyeing a new type of magnet for its EV motors that’s less dependent on rare earth minerals from China.

The automaker is forming a “strategic partnership” with Niron Magnetics, a Minnesota-based company that is developing magnetic technology based in iron nitride. GM’s venture arm is also investing an undisclosed sum into the company as it seeks to incorporate new technologies into its EV production.

The hope is that Niron’s magnets can eventually be used in the motors for the company’s electric vehicles, most of which currently use permanent magnets made from rare earth and heavy earth minerals from China. In contrast, Niron’s magnets purport to use iron nitride, which is comprised of the much more common elements of…

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