India plans to spend a billion dollars over next decade to sift through the seas and ocean bottom for minerals. Deep sea technologies such as underwater crawling machines and human piloted submarines along with probes will be used for this purpose.
At depths of 6 km (3.7 miles) the minerals can be 15 times more concentrated than on land. The floor of the world's seas is scattered with vast beds of black potato-shaped polymetallic nodules comprising copper, nickel, cobalt, manganese, iron and rare earth elements. All of these currently go into consumer electronics, industrial electronics and electricals and have relatively poor recovery rate due to a lack of proper recycling adoption and the rates of metal losses.
Currently, China controls the trade by producing 90% of these metals which are increasingly growing in value due to bans on mining and conflict it gives rise to.
Source : Reuters