Deep-sea mining robot on test mission fails

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- A deep sea mining robot on testing mission to take out rocks rich in cobalt and nickel from the ocean floor has malfunctioned.

A listing pump failed and Patania II now stands on the sea floor, Global Sea Mineral Resources said in a statement on Wednesday, referring to the name of its mining device.The unit of Belgium's DEME Group will begin salvage operations later today.

Controversial plans to mine ocean floor face a key test this year when a United Nations body features rules that could spur the exploitation of hundreds of billions of dollars of battery metals.

Global Sea Mineral Resources, which brought up its first minerals from the ocean floor on April 20, is among companies such as DeepGreen Metals Inc. Lockheed Martin Corp. and China Minmetals Corp. that are looking to exploit seabed metals needed to power the electric vehicle revolution.

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