Competitive nature I’m the first to admit that I have a competitive streak. It usually comes into full force when a new face joins my early morning spinning class and I am overcome by the urge to show them how it’s done. I’m not proud, but who doesn’t enjoy feeling a little bit smug? Competition is everywhere, along with the constant need to better one’s self or the way we live, work and play. The US extrusion industry is a current example; while demand growth is expected to moderate across the year, supply issues and economic concerns are keeping the market competitive. To explain more and in light of the upcoming ET’ 16 show, there’s a market overview on page 9. Extrusions are also part of a push for closed loop or cradle-to-cradle recycling, which brings me nicely onto our next feature; Sustainability. With AluSolutions just around the corner (10-11 May), this issue includes a preview, as well as articles on aluminium in green buildings (page 43), recycling and sorting technologies (page 48) and a case study on developing a sustainable casthouse (page 50). There is also an Association Update from AFSA on page 17, an extensive bauxite feature with a look at developing bauxite projects (page 25) and waste disposal techniques (page 32). Last, but not least, I caught up with the delightful Ron Knapp, Secretary General of the International Aluminium Institute to ask him a few things (page 8). I hope you enjoy the issue.
Bonnell Aluminum, a subsidiary of Tredegar Corporation (NYSE:TG), will be investing approximately $18 million over the next 12 months to fund an expansion project which will include the purchase of a new aluminium extrusion line at its AACOA facility in Niles, Michigan. Planned startup is the second quarter 2017. “With continued growing demand from our customers, it is exciting to invest in this additional capacity, knowing that we will satisfy these opportunities with
the high quality products and services that AACOA is known for in the industry,” commented Brook Hamilton, President and General Manager for Bonnell Aluminum. “Our facility in Niles is ideally suited for this project, with a wellrun operation and a great team in place.” “AACOA has a solid market reputation and is highly regarded as a leader in the markets it serves, primarily consumer durables and machinery and equipment. The Niles facility also serves the automotive market due to its regional
location,” added Ira Endres, Vice President, Sales and Marketing. “It makes sense to increase the capacity in Niles based on demand from our customers.” The new line will be comprised of a 3,600-ton extrusion press, housing a 9-inch container, handling systems and ancillary equipment. Capacity is estimated at approximately 16 million pounds. The project also includes additional floor space to accommodate future value-added fabrication capacity.
Hydro to build technology pilot Hydro has made a formal build decision for the planned full-scale technology pilot at Karmøy, Norway, aiming to verify the world’s most climate and energy efficient production of primary aluminium. Total costs are estimated at NOK 4.3 billion, consisting of net project costs of NOK 2.7 billion and around NOK 1.6 billion in support from Enova. The first metal from the technology pilot is expected during the second half of 2017. “After several successful improvement programmes, the next steps in our efforts to further strengthen our cost curve position will increasingly rely on our ability to advance our industry-leading position in technology and innovation,” says Hydro president and CEO Svein Richard Brandtzæg. “The Karmøy technology pilot will play a key role in realising this ambition, ensuring that the Norwegian technology cluster remains the global leader in sustainable
aluminium production.” With the pilot project, Hydro aims to industrialise the world’s most climate and energy efficient aluminium electrolysis technology. The ambition is to reduce energy consumption by around 15% per kilo aluminium produced compared to the world average, with the lowest CO2 footprint in the world. In addition, the implementation of technology spin-offs to existing production lines are expected to improve productivity in the current primary aluminium portfolio, contributing to Hydro’s capacity creep ambition of an additional 200,000 tonnes per year by 2025. The technology pilot is designed with an annual production capacity of approximately 75,000 tonnes, consisting of 48 cells with 12.3 kWh/Kg HAL4e technology and 12 cells with 11.5-11.8 kWh/kg HAL4e Ultra technology. Total costs are estimated at NOK 4.3 billion, consisting of net pro-
ject costs of NOK 2.7 billion and around NOK 1.6 billion in support from Enova. The project costs are adjusted for inflation and currency developments since the investment decision was announced in February 2015. An overall power solution in Norway includes new competitive power contracts for Hydro’s existing portfolio and the Karmøy pilot, and a pending decision from Norwegian authorities regarding industrial ownership of power within the current consolidation model. This would enable private minority shareholders in power production companies to take out dividends as physical power off take, rather than being limited to just receiving financial dividends. Hydro’s investment in the Karmøy technology pilot is the largest, single investment in Norwegian mainland industry outside the oil and gas sector since Hydro expanded the Sunndal aluminium plant in 2002-2004.
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