Ups and downs
It has been a strange few weeks here in the UK and while we wait for the dust to settle, it could be some time before we see any sort of impact on the global aluminium industry.
After talking to a number of industry representatives, there is quite a lot of confusion at the moment and it seems the future will very much depend on the individual circumstances of UK companies.
As with everything in life, there is likely to be some winners and some losers. Unfortunately, when it comes to football, England is far too familiar with the latter!
I won’t pretend to know anything about football, so it is probably best that I stick to knowing what can be found inside this issue of Aluminium International Today.
Paul Adkins, Managing Director of AZ China, presents China in a different light in an update on page 10, while this theme continues in a US update, which looks at challenging oversupply and the impact on aluminium prices.
It’s not all doom and gloom, as there are also interesting technical articles on furnace stirring technologies and automated sorting in a ‘Secondary’ feature starting on page 20.
Finally, a detailed feature on ‘Analysis & Testing’, highlights modern analysis systems for the aluminium industry and the problems primary plants are experiencing because they are still relying on old technology on page 38.
I hope you enjoy the issue.
Nadine Firth, Editor
Read all about it
One thing we are proud to do here at Aluminium International Today is bring readers the latest industry news from across the value chain. With six issues of the magazine a year, it can sometimes be a tricky task to keep it as up-to-date as possible, which is why we also publish news daily on www.aluminiumtoday.com
We understand that news means different things to different people and so you might notice a slight change to the way we have presented it in this issue... Hopefully it will help you get straight to the point when it comes to finding information, or taking a break with a cup of coffee.
While that coffee is still hot, I recommend a read of the Iran Update on page 11, which looks at the rise of this new industrial region and the opportunities it could open up for the aluminium industry. The figures show that Iran could be producing up to 1 million mt by 2020, so it is certainly one to watch.
Moving further downstream, I was lucky enough to visit the grand opening of Constellium’s new University Technology Centre at Brunel University London, which is dedicated to product development in the automotive sector. You can read more on page 38.
There is all of this, as well as technical articles on heat treatment technology, a dedicated projects and products update and a very interesting piece on joint ventures and the risks and challenges they can pose.
I’m off to make a coffee...
Nadine Firth, Editor
I’m the first to admit that I have a competitive streak. It usually comes into full force when a new face joins my early morning spinning class and I am overcome by the urge to show them how it’s done. I’m not proud, but who doesn’t enjoy feeling a little bit smug?
Competition is everywhere, along with the constant need to better one’s self or the way we live, work and play. The US extrusion industry is a current example; while demand growth is expected to moderate across the year, supply issues and economic concerns are keeping the market competitive.
To explain more and in light of the upcoming ET '16 show, there’s a market overview on page 9. Extrusions are also part of a push for closed loop or cradle-to-cradle recycling, which brings me nicely onto our next feature; Sustainability.
With AluSolutions just around the corner (10-11 May), this issue includes a preview, as well as articles on aluminium in green buildings, recycling and sorting technologies and a case study on developing a sustainable casthouse.
There is also an Association Update from AFSA, an extensive bauxite feature with a look at developing bauxite projects and waste disposal techniques.
Last, but not least, I caught up with the delightful Ron Knapp, Secretary General of the International Aluminium Institute to ask him a few things.
I hope you enjoy the issue!
Nadine Firth, Editor
PS - You can actually view some of the articles published in this issue here