The big interview this month is with none other than Kevin Anton, Alcoa's chief sustainability officer. We travelled to Knoxville, Tennessee – birthplace of Quentin Tarantino and Jackass star, Johnny Knoxville – to meet with Kevin and discuss Alcoa's historical association with sustainability dating back to the time when the aluminium production process was first invented.
According to Kevin, Alcoa's sustainability work helps the environment, society and the company's shareholders because it's embedded into the infrastructure and management system. "If you have a project that's only going to pull one of those levers, it's probably not going to be so great," Kevin says.
In addition to a vibrant news section, we have two excellent Update articles, one from Myra Pinkham on the US automotive sector driving growth and the other from Antaike's Michael Huang, who discusses how domestic aluminium prices in China have taken a tumble.
AZ China's Paul Adkins finds striking similarities between the plight of Pacific Aluminium's Gove alumina refinery and the novels of Charles Dickens.
In keeping with Aluminium International Today's decision to carry mining and refining features, we publish an article by Damien Clancy, managing director of Rusal Aughinish, on certified energy management, followed by a whole series of articles based in papers presented at the recent TMS 2013 conference in San Antonio, Texas.
Furnaces take pride of place with articles from Hydro Aluminium Sunndal and from Solios Thermal's Mike Unitt, who discusses furnace trends in the casthouse. Innovatherm and Boyne Smelters look at Boyne's ProBake advanced firing technology while Alex Lowery, general manager Wise Chem takes a look at molten aluminium explosions, which are fatal – but can be avoided.
With Aluminium China fast approaching, we look at what Reed's big exhibition and conference has to offer and, to round off, Dr. Tom Farley, managing director of UK-based Innoval Technology picks up on a theme developed by Myra Pinkham earlier in the issue – that the automotive industry will drive growth in the global aluminium industry.
Cover image: Wagstaff.
This month Aluminium International Today breaks with tradition and offers readers not one, but two EXCLUSIVE interviews with CEOs from major aluminium companies. We travelled to California to meet Jack Hockema, Kaiser Aluminum's CEO and we made a slightly shorter journey – into London, the UK capital – to discuss the global primary aluminium industry with UC Rusal's deputy CEO, Oleg Mukhamedshin.
What both men have in common is optimism. Jack explains how the aerospace industry's move to monolithic design has been extremely beneficial to the well-being of Kaiser Aluminum. Oleg says he is optimistic because the situation can't get any worse. The solution, he says is to adopt a rational approach to production.
Aerospace virtually kicks off the issue with Myra Pinkham's USA Update focusing on the emergence of carbon fibre composites, a discussion that continues in the Jack Hockema interview.
There's an interesting China Update from CRU's Ling Wong who discusses Xinjiang province in North Western China, widely touted as 'the new Henan' thanks to cheap power and zero tax incentives. And then, as a kind of precursor to our exclusive interview with Oleg Mukhamedshin, Eugene Gerden looks at how depressed aluminium prices have forced UC Rusal to revise its future development strategy.
Mahmood Daylami, the Gulf Aluminium Council's secretary-general, looks at how the Gulf region is developing its downstream industry while Sapa North America's Jeff Henderson argues that interesting opportunities for aluminium extruders exist in the automotive and construction industries.
SMS Meer discusses heavy duty rolling presses, Otto Junker looks at log and billet heating and Ametek says that aluminium recycling requires accurate testing equipment to determine the identity of different alloys.
We take a look at mining and refining with articles from consultants David Sugden on what it takes to make a bauxite mine; and Peter-Hans ter Weer on the economies of scale of alumina refining.
LOI Italimpianti's Hermann Meyer and BWG's Dr. Andreas Noé are the subjects of this month's Perspectives articles.
Front cover courtesy of Emal
Happy new year to all readers of Aluminium International Today and welcome to our first issue of 2013, which is jam-packed, as usual, with a lot of interesting articles and interviews. We kick off the new year with an exclusive interview with Svein Richard Brandtzaeg, CEO of Norway-based global aluminium producer Norsk Hydro. Svein Richard is optimistic for the future of the aluminium and believes strongly in the light metal's 'climate-positive' credentials.
Sticking with Hydro, there's also an interesting article from the company that reinforces Svein Richard's green objectives for the business. Hydro is transporting more and more goods by sea in an effort to reduce costs and emissions. In Norway alone, the company hopes to reduce the number of trucks on the road by up to 5,000 per year.
In fact, there is a distinctly Norwegian flavour to this issue as Italo Dal Porto, senior engineer at Norway-based HMR Hydeq argues that metal tapping with vehicles increases overall efficiency and fewer risk zones.
The Gulf is one of the most important regions of the world for aluminium production and promises to remain so. Our editor, Matthew Moggridge, who was in Qatar late last year, reports on the Arab Aluminium (Arabal) conference and also writes about two leading Gulf producers, Dubal and Emal.
Marco Georgiou, editor of the CRU Group's Aluminium Long Term Outlook Report is also writing about the Gulf and claims that the region is one of the largest aluminium production hubs outside of China.
We have news updates from India and the USA, advice on how to eliminate 'butt swell' and the views of ECL, FATA Hunter and Claudius Peters in our Perspectives Q&A features. All in all, a perfect issue to start the new year.