CMI researcher Ruby Nguyen worked internationally in the non-profit sector and industry before joining Idaho National Laboratory as a postdoc in 2015. Her work seeks to understand human impacts on natural resources, especially critical materials. Using systems modeling, she explores mechanisms to reduce impacts such as recycling, substitution and reducing material intensity. An important aspect of my work is linking economic drivers and environmental factors to technology development to shed light on new technology adoption rates and their effects on the markets.
Her CMI team strives to characterize CMI research impacts on the supply chain given market dynamics. Some highlighted examples of successful collaborations include the Al-Ce project and the electrochemical recovery of rare earth elements . The group conducts high level supporting analyses such as disassembling vehicle components to characterize critical material content and linking potential rare earth supply with U.S. wind energy targets. They created a Dynamic Rare Earth Element Model (DREEM) as open source.