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Metal Asia August 2012 Issue

A Complete Metal Magazine

SPECIAL FEATURE

Indian Metals Sector – An Overview Future Trends in Metal Applications
In a global manufacturing scenario marked by unpredictable market conditions, intense competition, rising demand for high quality products, and ever-increasing customer expectations on cost reduction, the need for achieving manufacturing excellence is stronger than ever. Manufacturing industries are constantly exploring new initiatives and technologies not only to remain competitive, but also to sustain their growth and face challenges.

COMMENT

Shortage of bauxite, concerns for aluminium industry
Bauxite is the main raw material used to produce alumina. With the highspeed development of national economy, China has become the world’s largest alumina producer and consumer. Currently, the actual production of alumina is 30 million tonnes per year, accounting for 36% of the world. As the domestic high-quality bauxite are greatly in short supply, the dependence on foreign resources of alumina industry has been as high as 60%. The shortage of bauxite ore has become the bottleneck of sustainable development of alumina industry.

NATIONAL TRENDS

  • Independence Day celebrations at NMDC
    NMDC celebrated 66th Independence Day at its Corporate Office at Hyderabad and its various units.
  • Hindalco’s net jumps 38%
    Aditya Birla group’s flagship company Hindalco reported a 38% jump in its consolidated net profit to Rs. 3,397 crore for the financial year ended 2011-12, on the back of a strong performance by Novelis and its copper business in India.
  • Siemens provides Security Solutions to Bharat Diamond Bourse
    The Building Technologies Division of Siemens Ltd. will provide comprehensive integrated security solutions to the Bharat Diamond Bourse Complex in Mumbai.
  • NALCO Foundation flags off Education Initiative
    NALCO Foundation, the CSR arm of National Aluminium Company Limited (NALCO), has started a new initiative to sponsor quality education among the tribal children of periphery villages of Damanjodi, in the tribal-dominated Koraput district of Odisha, where company’s Mines and Refinery are located. Under this programme, the 1st batch comprising 93 tribal children have been sponsored to Kalinga Institute of Social Sciences (KISS), Bhubaneswar.
  • NALCO announces dividend for 2011-12
    In the 31st Annual General Meeting, the shareholders of National Aluminium Company Limited (NALCO), a Navratna PSU under Ministry of Mines, Govt of India, have approved a total dividend payout of Rs. 257.72 crore. Since inception, NALCO has paid Rs. 4197.72 crore as dividend, including Rs. 3659.60 crore as share of Govt. of India.
  • HZL expects 10% growth in metal demand
    Hindustan Zinc Limited (HZL), the world’s largest integrated producer of zinc, expects domestic demand for the metal to grow at 8-10% per annum, nearly twice the rate at which global demand is tipped to grow.

INTERNATIONAL TRENDS

  • Ma’aden-Alcoa 1: Shop assembly and Plug & Work tests for smooth commissioning
    High season in Hilchenbach. In the workshop of SMS Siemag, hot and cold mill stands destined for the customer Ma’aden-Alcoa are arranged in line in the “high bay” and are being assembled. At the same time, just one hundred meters away, SMS specialists very thoroughly check the automation system of the plant in the new test field. All these activities serve to make sure the new plant of the joint venture Ma’aden-Alcoa in Saudi Arabia will start production as scheduled and soon achieve the aspired production rate.
  • Ma’aden-Alcoa 2: Order for a single-stand aluminium mill
    In March 2012, the joint venture Ma’aden- Alcoa placed a follow-up order with SMS Siemag covering the supply of a single-stand aluminium cold rolling mill which is destined for the new integrated hot and cold rolling complex under construction in the Saudi Arabian location of Ras Al Khair. This complex is supplied by SMS Siemag and will go on stream in 2013.
  • Ma’aden-Alcoa 3: Aluminium annealing and coating line for automotive grades
    For a new annealing and coating line at the joint venture Ma’aden-Alcoa, all plant components including electrics and automation systems will be supplied by SMS Siemag from a single source. SMS Siemag will be responsible for the design, manufacture, erection supervision and commissioning of the line in the Ras al Khair plant in Saudi Arabia.
  • Alcoa Aluminium Alloy Drill Pipe helps Brunei Shell Petroleum Navigate Complex Offshore Drilling Well
    Alcoa announced that its Alcoa Oil & Gas business has successfully deployed 1800 meters (5,905 feet) of Aluminium Alloy Drill Pipe (AADP®) in the Iron Duke Well C offshore Seria, Brunei. Alcoa partnered with Brunei Shell Petroleum Co. Sdn. Bhd. (BSP), the largest oil and gas producer in Brunei, and AMRTUR Corp., Alcoa’s service partner, on the project.
  • Emal's first steel raised in phase II expansion
    On 29 July 2012, the first structural steel for Emirates Aluminium’s (EMAL) Phase II expansion was erected. It is the latest milestone for the UAE flagship industrial project and brings the company another step closer to becoming one of the world’s largest single-site aluminium smelters.

IN FOCUS

  • Hindalco to feel domestic pressure
    Hindalco Industries Ltd.’s is set to feel the domestic pressure as the domestic operations of the company witnessed lower volumes and profitability in the June 2012 quarter which were declared (in results) on the second week of August. The aluminium volumes are expected to take a few quarters to stabilise post power outages and higher raw material costs are likely to keep a note on the company’s profitability.
  • Lead and Silver likely to keep Hindustan Zinc on dexterous platform
    In an environment showcasing falling metal prices on the London Metal Exchange (LME) behind the demand for metals on a global note, the metal stocks have been hit as well. Relatively, Hindustan Zinc has corrected a percentage, partly due to the predictable reduction in output erupting in the muted June quarter results.

COMPANY NEWS

Nonferrous Metals Plants

The market for NF plants grew vigorously in 2011. There was a significant higher project activity involving both aluminium and copper plants following a weak year in 2010.

COMPANY REPORT

Vedanta - robust production growth escalates overall performance levels

Vedanta Resources plc (“Vedanta”), the London listed FTSE-100 diversified global resources major and a $70 billion metals and mining conglomerate is an optimum manufacturer of aluminium, copper, zinc, lead, silver and oil and gas.

PRODUCT / MARKET

Konecranes launched new Hybrid Power Pack Technology for RTG Cranes

Konecranes has introduced a Hybrid (diesel/electric) power option for its Rubber Tired Gantry cranes (RTGs), which can reduce diesel fuel consumption by over 60%.

TECHNOLOGY FOCUS

Industrial Furnaces for Copper Industry “High-End-Fire-Refining” - MAERZ Direct-to-Wire

Cathodes and comparable raw materials are traditionally the most common qualities for the production of copper wire, semi-finished or finished products like billets, cakes and tubes. Selected scraps with higher impurity levels and defined compositions could only be used for lower qualities or in combination with suitable dilution ratios. Most producers do not have any metallurgical refining capacities available in their melting and casting shops. Thus, fire refining and electrolytic refinement with tank house operations with corresponding costs are necessary.

RAW MATERIALS

Development of Synthetic Mag - Chrome Aggregates for Refractory Application

Chrome bearing refractories in the form of Direct Bonded Mag-Chrome or Chrome-Mag refractories are nowadays being treated as tailor-made refractories in several applications such as in Copper Metallurgy and Zinc Metallurgy. Mag-chrome refractories forming complex spinel phase at elevated temperature are used in some units of steel melting shop such as Vacuum Oxygen Degassing and RH Degassing etc. High purity low silica bearing lumpy hard chrome ore is not available in appreciable extent in nature for use in commercial purpose. Therefore, friable chrome ore after beneficiation can be a raw material to make chromemag refractories. But, beneficiated low silica friable chrome ore also suffers from its particle size limitation as it is mostly available in fine fraction. Coarse fraction of friable chrome is not available. Effort has, therefore, been employed to make Synthetic Mag-chrome aggregates in the form of either fused or sintered grain in the brick. In the present work, TiO2 has also been used as Sintering Aid. Some sintered pallets are solution impregnated and refired for improvement of the properties of developed products.

REFRACTORY

The Influence of Antioxidants on Some Critical Properties of Magnesia-carbon Refractory

The effect of metallic elements, metallic alloy and carbide addition on the physical and thermal properties of Magnesia-carbon refractory is investigated. The properties evaluated are oxidation resistance, Hot MOR and corrosion resistance. The phase development at elevated temperature was evaluated through XRD analysis. The carbide exhibits maximum oxidation resistance. In this paper, the effect of antioxidants (individual/ combination) on the thermo-mechanical and corrosion properties of magnesia-carbon refractory is reported.

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