At their joint general meeting in Frankfurt am Main, the VDMA Specialist Associations – Foundry Machinery, Metallurgical Plants and Rolling Mills, and Thermo Process Technology –announced the formation of a new joint group: the VDMA Metallurgy Specialist Association. The previous specialist associations are to be specialist sections of the new body. The overall board of VDMA Metallurgy will comprise the chairmen and deputy chairmen of the previous specialist associations. The designated chairman of the board is Ioannis Ioannidis, president & CEO of the Oskar Frech company. Designated deputy chairmen are Christian Bartels-von Varnbüler, president of the Küttner Group, and Joachim G. Wünning, managing director of WS Wärmeprozesstechnik GmbH.
Aleris has opened its aluminium automotive body sheet production facility in Lewisport, Kentucky. The project, which represents a USD400 million investment, positions Aleris to meet significant growth in North American automotive demand as the industry pursues broader aluminium use for the production of lighter, more fuel-efficient vehicles. The company began shipping automotive products from Lewisport to customers this month.
UC Rusal has announced that aluminium alloys 8030 and 8176 have been successfully approved by Russian authorities for the use in electrical wiring applications. This approval opens up new market opportunities for aluminium.
Novelis has announced that its Advanz 6HF-e/s200 aluminium alloy is now available in North America. This heat-treatable alloy, first introduced on the European market, provides automakers greater design flexibility due to its superior formability, strength performance and weight savings for outer and inner applications.
German manufacturers of tubes and aluminium aerosol cans are currently enjoying good market conditions. However, the industry is concerned about increases in the price of raw materials and consumables, which are substantial in some cases. The price of oil has risen by about 20% since June 2017, as the German aluminium association, GDA, points out, and the price of aluminium has increased by a good 10% during the same period. Furthermore, the coatings and printing inks industry is bemoaning bottlenecks in the supply of some raw materials.
Aleris Corporation has announced that the company’s planned acquisition by Zhongwang USA LLC will not proceed. The merger agreement between the parties expired by its terms on 12 November 2017. The merger was subject to customary regulatory approvals, including approval from the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States. In July the Committee raised concerns about the transaction, and the parties withdrew their filing while extending the merger agreement to allow for additional discussions.
Boeing has announced its investment in Valencia, Calif.-based Gamma Alloys, a leader in aluminium alloys focused on developing advanced metal-matrix composites for use in aerospace, automotive and other industries. This investment by Boeing HorizonX Ventures, which was established earlier this year, is its first in advanced materials and machining development and applications.
UC Rusal has launched a new aluminium brand, Allow, which features a significantly lower carbon footprint (specific volume of greenhouse gas emissions) as compared to the industry average. As demand amongst consumers grows for more sustainable and environmentally friendly aluminium, Rusal utilizes its unique access to clean, renewable hydro power to provide a product with a significantly reduced carbon footprint. According to Rusal, Allow’s carbon footprint is lower than four tonnes of CO2 per tonne of aluminium, while the world average is currently around 12 tonnes of CO2/tAl (scope 1 and 2 at the smelter). All Allow branded metal produced by Rusal will be independently verified so as to provide credible quality assurance for our customers.
Aleris has signed a multi-year agreement with Bombardier to supply aluminium flat rolled products for a variety of Bombardier aircraft programmes. The new agreement extends the scope of products supplied by Aleris to include technically demanding high strength and superior corrosion resistant plate products.
The new Danieli DiamondFlex 6-high cold rolling mill (CM4 designation) will be installed in a new building at Logan Aluminum in Logan County, Western Kentucky, USA. The operation of the new mill will further enhance Logan’s capabilities by rolling 29.5-tonne coils with maximum strip width of 2,133 mm at speeds of up to 2,200 m/min. Logan’s new mill will be the fastest cold mill in the world, and also the most powerful with a nominal stand power of 9,500 kW.
The mill will produce can-stock and supply the substantial increases in demand forecast for automotive flat products. The close collaboration and partnership between Logan and Danieli ensures that the CM4 mill will encompass Logan’s experience and expertise in operating and optimizing high performance mills.
Aluminium beverage cans are the most recycled drinks package in the world, according to a new analysis by Resource Recycling Systems (RRS). Commissioned by the Can Manufacturers Institute (CMI), Beverage Can Makers Europe (BCME) and Abralatas in Brazil, the study used global recycling data to calculate and validate the global recyclability rates for aluminium, PET and glass beverage containers. The study established a global weighted average recycling rate for aluminium at 69%, compared to PET at 43% and glass at 46%.
China Zhongwang Holdings Ltd has completed its acquisition of a majority stake in SilverYachts, an Australia-based all-aluminium superyacht builder. The transaction marks a strategic move for both parties to make further inroads in expanding the application of aluminium in the marine sector. “We are delighted to join hands with SilverYachts to navigate the high-end marine sector at full speed,” said Lu Changqing, president and executive director of China Zhongwang.
The US Department of Commerce has imposed fresh import duties on aluminium foil from China accusing exporters from China selling their product at prices that resulted in preliminary dumping margins of 96.81 to 162.24%. Upon issuance of this preliminary determination, the Department of Commerce will instruct US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) to collect cash deposits from importers of aluminium foil from China based on the preliminary rates. Commerce is currently scheduled to announce its final antidumping determination on 23 February 2018.
Charles “Chip” Blankenship (51) has been appointed as Chief Executive Officer of Arconic and a member of the board of directors, effective 15 January 2018. He is a 24-year veteran of General Electric (GE) who spent much of his career in its aviation and jet engine businesses.
Blankenship brings 20 years of aerospace experience to Arconic, having worked across GE’s aviation businesses, including aero engines, industrial gas turbines and aerospace alloy development. He previously led GE Aviation’s Commercial Engines Operation, the world’s leading producer of large and small jet engines for commercial aircraft.
Toyota recently raised the stakes to remain the top manufacturer of hybrid vehicles worldwide with a USD373.8m investment in five US manufacturing plants that will support production of its first American-made hybrid powertrain and to implement Toyota's New Global Architecture (TNGA) at its Alabama plant. Each of the projects is scheduled to begin this year and all should be operational by 2020.
Alcoa Corp. reports a sequential increase in Q3 2017 revenue and earnings, driven primarily by improved pricing in the aluminium business segment and higher shipments of aluminium and bauxite. Against this background Alcoa has increased its projection for full-year adjusted Ebitda (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization) to USD2.4 billion.
UC Rusal has announced the launch of an experimental reduction area at the Irkutsk Aluminium Smelter, which will operate under the EcoSoderberg technology. The total amount of investment in the project amounted to 540 million roubles (USD9.4m). Implementing EcoSoderberg technology is one of the priority retrofitting projects for the Russian aluminium producer. New generation pot cells have a significantly reduced environmental impact, and bring increased energy efficiency to aluminium smelters and automation for the majority of production processes.
Alro S.A. in Romania implements a long-term programme of over USD100 million to increase energy efficiency and to reduce the company’s specific consumption, as part of its Green Factory programme. “Over the past 15 years, we have continually invested in modern equipment that has increased not only production, but also operational efficiency,” said general manager Gheorghe Dobra. “In addition, our research programmes have helped us achieve much lower energy consumption and emissions compared to industry average. Now is the time to take the next step, to further reduce the industrial carbon footprint, but at the same time to continue to increase the production of high and very high added-value aluminium and to strengthen our position in sophisticated markets such as aerospace or automotive.”
ASAS Alüminyum is one of the leading aluminium companies in Turkey. The company operates the largest aluminium extrusion press in Turkey and its product range includes high-tech axial corrugated aluminium heat pipes for communication satellites. ASAS has recently won two tenders under a project carried out by the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN), one of the world's largest and most respected centres for scientific research, especially when it comes to particle physics.
Constellium N.V. has signed a multi-year agreement with Bombardier to supply flat rolled products in a rich mix of alloys, shapes and applications for a number of their aircraft programmes. In this new contract, Constellium will become one of the leading suppliers of flat rolled products to Bombardier globally, strengthening its position as a strategic supplier.
In the first half of 2017, the total number of tubes delivered by all manufacturers which are members of the european tube manufacturers association (etma) amounted to nearly 5.4 billion. This mid-year figure is 2% higher compared with the same period in 2016. Aluminium tubes put in an above-average performance, having increased by a good 3%. The aluminium tube sector benefited from stable demand from its main markets, namely cosmetics and pharmaceuticals, as well as considerable increases in the household and food segment.
In the first half of 2017, the members of the International Organisation of Aluminium Aerosol Container Manufacturers (Aerobal) delivered an impressive 2.9 billion aluminium aerosol cans worldwide. That means the output is more or less at the same level as 2016, a year that ended with record results for the industry.
Hammerer Aluminium Industries Santana Srl, based in Santana, Romania has ordered a second homogenizing plant consisting of two batch furnaces, a cooling station and handling equipment from Hertwich Engineering, a subsidiary of the SMS group. Commissioning is scheduled for February 2018.
Oliver Janz has taken over the worldwide technical management of the KSM Castings Group’s production plants, effective since 1 October 2017. He has been with the KSM Castings Group since 2008. He holds a degree in mechanical engineering, has extensive professional experience and since 2012 has looked after production plants for the group in China, the USA and Germany. Janz has in particularly successfully managed and significantly further developed the Wuppertal site. From now onwards he will be responsible for the technical development and future orientation of the worldwide sites.
In cooperation with Audi, Henkel has developed an auto body pre-treatment process. The patented two-step process enables surface treatment of multi-metal auto bodies with an aluminium content of up to 100%.
The number of enterprises and research institutes which are engaged with the manifold application and development opportunities of 3D printing processes is growing. These processes, also called additive respectively generative manufacturing processes, can be applied to produce parts which cannot be manufactured in a conventional way. Up to now, 3D printing processes do not compete with pressure die-casting. They are, however, suitable to enhance the performance capabilities of enterprises in this industry.
The first cast was achieved at Garmco’s new remelt facility in Bahrain early in August. The aluminium slabs were produced in the presence of both Garmco’s operation team and executives, and Fives’ representatives. At the end of August, the first batch of scalped slabs came out from the new production line.
Scalping consists of mechanical removal of contamination from surface of a slab cast prior to hot rolling. Following scalping, the slabs have now been successfully rolled at the
existing hot rolling mill and cold rolled to finished gauge thickness. During the project execution, safety was at the heart of Fives’ priority. Thanks to a very strict HSE policy and the daily work of Fives’ teams on site, 1.5m working hours without any LTI (Lost Time Injuries) were reached.
Aluminium extrusion company Hammerer Aluminium Industries (HAI), based in the Upper Austrian town of Ranshofen, has secured full capacity utilisation for several years to come with major new orders from the automotive and rail vehicle industries. “New orders received – amounting to more than 200 million euros – in addition to our ongoing business mean that our production halls will be working to capacity until 2020,” reports CEO Rob van Gils. “Despite the adverse conditions faced after the financial crisis along with difficulties in the solar industry, we’ve done our homework well in recent years. The acquisition of plants in Germany, our focus on the highest product quality and the expansion of production capacity are now paying dividends.”
Toyota just upped the stakes to remain the top manufacturer of hybrid vehicles worldwide with a USD373.8m investment in five US manufacturing plants that will support production of its first American-made hybrid powertrain and to implement Toyota's New Global Architecture (TNGA) at its Alabama plant. Each of the projects is scheduled to begin this year and all should be operational by 2020.
Norsk Hydro’s acquisition of Orkla’s 50% ownership in Sapa was completed on 2 October, giving Hydro full ownership in the global leader in extruded aluminium solutions and making the company a leading force in the global aluminium industry. Sapa will become a new business area in Hydro, Extruded Solutions, and will be headed by Egil Hogna. The agreed enterprise value for 100% of Sapa is NOK27 billion. A preliminary purchase price for the shares, adjusted for net debt and normalized working capital, of NOK11.86 billion was paid in cash to Orkla.
The international journal for industry, research and application of aluminium is published monthly. It provides information on all topical issues concerning the material, its production, processing, recycling and application. Furthermore, economic topics and ecological consequences of aluminium application are discussed. Thirty percent of all articles in the journal are written in English.
The trade journal is the leading title in the whole German-speaking area. It provides information on material-specific characteristics of aluminium, latest processing technologies and innovative applications in various branches and sectors of industry.