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We're not sure what "grain boundary diffusion" means, but it has something to do with the Nissan Leaf all-electric vehicle substantially cutting its use of rare-earth minerals in its electric motor, so we're all for it. The Japanese automaker says that, starting in November, it began building electric motors for the Leaf that use 40 percent less of the rare-earth mineral dysprosium than before. Dysprosium was used to make the fast-spinning magnets inside the electric motor more heat resistant, b

A UN-backed report released late last week warns that lack of recycling threatens the future of hybrid and plug-on vehicles. In particular, the report, issued by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), claims that: