In January 2020, the John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act was instituted, adding neodymium to the list of DFARS materials. Through this act, neodymium is prohibited for government defense contracts if sourced from China, Russia, North Korea, or Iran.
To be compliant with this update to the Defense Federal Acquisition Regulation Supplement (DFARS), it is critical to be aware of the source of neodymium throughout the supply chain. Working with a vendor like Dura Magnetics, who is experienced with DFARS and the manufacture of neodymium magnets, is a vital factor in remaining compliant with these government contracts.
Previously, as competition drove prices downward, international mills closed or moved to China, leaving China as the sole supplier of neodymium magnets. The advent of the John S. McCain National Defense Authorization act blocks China from supplying neodymium for US government contracts. Mills in approved countries are, therefore, working to once again produce raw material, thus raising prices.
Along with increased price, the selection of neodymium grades has been reduced. Before the passage of this act, several dozen grades of Neodymium were available. However, due to the cost of production, approved mills have reduced the number of available grades. Fortunately, most designs can be adapted to the available options; for example, engineers can design a smaller magnet to be used with a higher-output material grade. The end product may need to change slightly; nonetheless, it will then be DFARS-compliant with the most recent update.
At Dura Magnetics, we understand the requirements needed to remain compliant and have the capabilities needed to design and fabricate neodymium magnets for custom applications. Contact us today to get started.