KPS Capital Partners (KPS) signed a definitive agreement to acquire the global aluminum rolling business (Rolling) from Norsk Hydro ASA for approximately $1.67 billion. The transaction is expected to be complete by the middle of the year. Rolling is one of the largest global manufacturers of aluminum rolled products and serves customers across markets including automotive, beverage can, foil packaging and construction. Its assets include seven manufacturing facilities and one research-and-development center across Germany and Norway. The acquired facilities include Alunorf, the world’s largest aluminum rolling mill according to Norsk Hydro, and Grevenbroich, the world’s largest rolled aluminum finishing mill according to Norsk Hydro.
The Aluminum Association released a series of policy documents laying out priorities to support a strong U.S. aluminum industry. “Presidential Policy Brief: Recommendations for a Strong U.S. Aluminum Industry” includes several recommendations for the Biden administration and Congress to support a growing and vibrant aluminum sector in the United States. An addendum to the industry’s overarching Aluminum Agenda released in 2019, the brief includes key policy goals in the areas of the energy, environment, infrastructure, recycling and trade.
Kaiser Aluminum Corp. entered into a definitive agreement to purchase Alcoa Warrick LLC, containing all the assets of the Warrick Rolling Mill, from Alcoa Corp. for a purchase price of $670 million. Alcoa will retain ownership of the related smelting assets, power plant and land. As part of the transaction, Kaiser Aluminum will enter into a market-based molten aluminum supply agreement. The Warrick facility includes casting, significant hot- and cold-rolling capacity, and a range of finishing and coating lines. Warrick, which is located near Evansville, Ind., has shipped over 675 million pounds of aluminum in the last 12 months.
Andritz received an order from Zouping Hongfa Aluminium Science Technology Co. Ltd., part of Weiqiao Aluminum Group, to supply one melting and holding furnace cell for its plant in Shandong Province, China. Start-up is scheduled for the first quarter of 2022. The furnace cell will include two 115-ton round-top melters and two 125-ton tilting holders. Andritz’s scope of supply includes engineering, manufacturing, commissioning, start-up and follow-up services. According to Andritz, the two melters are the largest ever supplied to China.
The global aluminum company formerly known as Braidy Industries announced a new name. Introduced as Unity Aluminum, the Ashland, Ky.-based company will continue to play a leading role in the aluminum industry by addressing a substantial global aluminum shortage impacting American jobs and economic growth. The new name signifies the company’s steadfast commitment to its customers, innovative technologies and local community in Ashland. Unity Aluminum has accelerated its plans to build the world’s most technologically advanced aluminum rolling mill. It is currently working to finalize fundraising and begin construction.
A significant concern when manufacturing aluminum metal is the practical service life of the furnace. The service life is largely driven by the refractory lining’s ability to resist the various operating conditions within the furnace, such as high temperature, temperature variation, chemical corrosion and mechanical abrasion.
Otto Junker GmbH delivered a pusher furnace for heating and homogenizing aluminum ingot to Logan Aluminum Inc. in Russellville, Ky. Logan Aluminum manufactures flat-rolled aluminum sheet primarily used in the beverage market. In an effort to expand production, the company now operates the largest ingot furnace Otto Junker has ever supplied. The gas-fired furnace can simultaneously hold 32 ingots weighing up to 32 metric tons each, resulting in a charge weight of over 1,000 metric tons. High-convection technology ensures fast heating and cooling with short cycle times and low energy consumption.
Alcoa Corp. reached an agreement to supply ECOLUM rolling slabs to Gränges, a producer of rolled aluminum products for heat-exchanger applications and other markets. ECOLUM cast products are produced at hydroelectric-powered aluminum smelters and guarantee no more than 2.5 metric tons of carbon dioxide smelter emissions per metric ton of aluminum. According to Alcoa, this is 75% better than the industry average. When also considering the upstream emissions from bauxite mining and refining, ECOLUM guarantees less than 4.0 metric tons of total carbon dioxide equivalents per metric ton of aluminum.
Arconic Corp. launched as a provider of advanced aluminum sheet, plate, extruded and architectural products that primarily advance the ground transportation, aerospace, industrial, packaging and commercial building markets. The separation of Arconic Inc. into two stand-alone companies – Arconic Corp. and Howmet Aerospace Inc. (the new name for Arconic Inc.) – took effect April 1, 2020, through a pro rata distribution by Arconic Inc. of 100% of the outstanding shares of the newly formed Arconic Corp.
Eurometal S.A. placed an order with Hertwich Engineering for the supply of a multi-chamber melting furnace for the expansion of its aluminum casthouse in Klomnice, Poland. The plant, which has a capacity of 30,000 tons per year, is scheduled to start operation in spring 2021. Hertwich Engineering, based in Austria, is a company of SMS group. The furnace, which is designed for a capacity of 100 tons per day, will be integrated into the existing production chain. It will mainly process clean and painted extrusion and sheet scrap as well as smaller amounts of briquetted sawing and machining chips. The scrap will be preheated for around 30 minutes to a temperature of approximately 932°F (500°C) by an intense hot-gas flow.