A process is described for purifying crude or scrap yttrium metal by first reacting the yttrium with fused MgC12and then purifying the magnesium and YC13 products by co-distillation. Dissolution and purification are carried out in a single heating step. The purified YC1 3is reduced with calcium in the presence of the magnesium to form a Y -Mg intermediate alloy which is processed to yttrium sponge. Further refinement of the metal was obtained employing a salt extraction step and electron beam melting. Yttrium of 99. 9+% purity was obtained from metal of 99. 3% purity.
Carlson, O. N.; Haefling, J. A.; and Schmidt, F. A., "A process for purifying yttrium metal" (1964). Ames Laboratory Technical Reports. 78.