Alcoa Corp. plans to restart 268,000 metric tons per year (mtpy) of aluminum capacity at its Alumar smelter in São Luís, Brazil. The facility has been fully curtailed since 2015. The process to restart will begin immediately. The first molten metal is expected in the second quarter of 2022, and the full 268,000 mtpy of capacity is expected to be operational in the fourth quarter of 2022. The Alumar smelter restart will involve the hiring of more than 750 employees.
AA Metals Inc., a Florida-headquartered aluminum distributor, purchased a dormant aluminum plant in Williamsport, Pa., with plans to reopen and hire 100 employees. The facility will be the company’s first U.S.-based manufacturing operation and will operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The former JW Aluminum plant closed in January 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The new business, which will be named Chance Aluminum, will focus on production of aluminum foil and coil and will serve as the domestic supplier of AA Metals.
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.
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.
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.
Ritchey Metals, a Canonsburg, Pa.-based manufacturer of zinc alloys, entered into a joint venture with Imperial Group to serve the nonferrous alloyed metals industry in the southern half of the United States. Chicago-based Imperial Group, which consists of 17 industrial entities, is a diversified metals group moving nearly 75 million pounds of metal per month. The joint venture will utilize Imperial Group’s plant in Scottsboro, Ala., which will add capabilities to service the market stretching all from the East Coast to the Southwest. Ritchey Metals operates two facilities in southwestern Pennsylvania, each with multiple industrial furnaces.
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.
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.
SECO/WARWICK Group’s subsidiary based in Meadville, Pa., has been awarded a major contract to build and commission a specialized aluminum solution heat-treating furnace for a U.S. manufacturer. The furnace, which is AMS 2750-compliant and Nadcap-capable, will be engineered to load, heat treat, quench and discharge with minimal operator assistance. It will be used to heat treat products for automotive, aerospace and medical applications.