A groundbreaking ceremony on 1 September marks the construction of Hydro’s new aluminium recycling plant in Szekesfehervar, Hungary.
The new facility will have a production capacity of 90,000 tpy and is expected to start production in the first quarter of 2024. The total investment is expected to be around EUR 88m and will create about 80 new jobs. The aluminium plant will be built alongside Hydro’s aluminium extrusion plant in Szekesfehervar and produce advanced alloys for extrusions used in the premium automotive segment. Using only 5 % of the energy originally needed to produce the metal, the plant will also provide customers with the opportunity to close the loop by taking back both production scrap and post-consumer scrap, which is recycled into new products.
Recycling more and more important
“Recycled aluminium is becoming more and more important within the extrusion industry. This new facility is an important investment for a greener future and will strengthen Hydro’s position as a leading supplier of high quality, low-carbon aluminium to a market where demand for greener aluminium is accelerating,” says Hilde Merete Aasheim, Hydro’s president and chief executive.
The Hungarian extrusion plant mainly serves automotive customers, and the ability to offer ‘closed loops’ is helping carmakers and customers from other industries to reduce the carbon footprint of their products. Closed loop recycling uses and reuses materials that can be continuously recycled, without loss of qualities and with less energy or resources. This is where aluminium stands out.
No transport necessary and the supply chain is optimized
In a closed loop, production scrap is collected and sent directly back to the recycling plant from manufacturers. With the recycling operation alongside the extrusion plant, transport is not required, the supply chain is optimized, and waste is limited to a minimum. The recycled aluminium goes right back into the production of advanced car components.
“As automotive customers put more emphasis on greener solutions, we are taking this breakthrough step in Hungary to grow the market with advanced products and drive sustainability,” says Paul Warton, who is responsible for Hydro’s Extrusions business. “We are increasing our recycling capacity in Central and Eastern Europe, ensuring reliable billet supply to our customers and creating possibilities of closing the loop by taking back and recycling production scrap and post-consumer scrap.”
Produce recycled aluminium locally
“Our customers and their end customers want products that demand less energy to produce, and that contain more recycled metal. By taking this next step in Hungary, with a state-of-the art remelt plant using the best technology available, we will be able to produce recycled aluminium locally: Hydro Restore,” says managing director Frank Iepema of Hydro Aluminium Extrusion.
Hydro Restore is a range of aluminium products made locally from a combination of recycled pre-consumer scrap, recycled post-consumer scrap and primary aluminium. Once the scrap is collected, it will be melted, cast into a new billet at the recycling facility and return as input material for use in new products.