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Rhenium minerals are rare, only ReS2 and CuReS4. Rhenium is mainly accompanied with molybdenum, copper, lead, zinc, platinum and niobium minerals. Molybdenite that contains rhenium mineral and has economic value contains rhenium generally from 0.001% to 0.031%. However, the molybdenum concentrate processed from porphyry copper contains rhenium up to 0.16%. The main raw materials to produce rhenium are by-products in molybdenum smelting process. Rhenium can be recovered from some copper ore, platinum group ore and niobium ore, even sphalerite smelting slag, dust and processing low-grade molybdenite waste.

Rhenium is 0.001 × 10-4% of content in the crust, and one of the few non-ferrous metal reserves on Earth. The world's known economic reserves in places is about 2500t, and the resource quantity is 10000t, mostly in Chile, the former Soviet Union, and Canada and other regions. The current available reserves of rhenium is 237t in China. The rhenium yield is less, only 30-50t of the world's annual output in recent years, while the consumption of rhenium has steadily increased with the rapid development of advanced materials technology.