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Metals & Engineering News

R90m investment in new tube facilities

By: System Author     23rd July 1999 Welded-steel tube manufacturer Robor Tube has a new name to boast of, and a string of manufacturing achievements which put it some way ahead of the competition. The company has been formed through the merger of Brollo and Tosa, making it the biggest manufacturer of longitudinally-welded steel... 

Thin-slab casting

By: System Author     23rd July 1999 With an increasing demand for higher-quality steel grades, especially in the field of thin-gauge flat products, smaller steel mills are looking to alternative strategies and more efficient production techniques. Taking a lead in this world trend, Saldanha Steel has followed the route of... 

180 projects envisaged for Mpumalanga

By: System Author     16th July 1999 More than 180 investment projects worth US$7-billion have already been identified in Mpumalanga in order to unlock its potential as part of the Maputo development corridor (MDC), reports Mpumalanga Investment Initiative (MII) CEO Gordon Griffiths. These projects in the stainless steel, timber,... 

Confidence in SA emerges from UK trade mission

By: System Author     9th July 1999 Positive, optimistic and confident was the general feeling about the potential of the South African economy among the representatives of a group of nine British companies visiting South Africa last week. The trade mission, organised by the North East Development Agency (NEDA) with the support of... 

Bicycles for the 21st century

By: System Author     2nd July 1999 How shall we manufacture bicycles in the next century? Better bikes – stronger, yet lighter. We are approaching the limits of aluminium tubular manufacturing. And manufacturers claim that they cannot take any more money or time out of the process. We will soon be able to ride ultra-light... 

Development project boosts Cape economy

By: System Author     2nd July 1999 THE multibillion-rand development project for Mossgas in Mossel Bay is set to boost the Cape economy. Although the managing contractor is Dresser-Kellogg Energy Services, of the UK, care has been taken to ensure a maximum of local-company involvement in the R2,2-billion project. Fully South... 

R700 000 silo, conveyor supplied to cassava factory

By: System Author     2nd July 1999 Gauteng firm Bulk Pneumatic Handling has designed and managed the supply of a silo and conveyor equipment to South Africa’s first commercial cassava-starch plant, in the Northern Province, reports director Tony Chiappini. The company managed the design and installation of a silo, motorised... 

Control buoy only second of its kind

By: System Author     2nd July 1999 A special unmanned control buoy, which is at the cutting edge of technology and only the second of its kind in the world, will be the only visible sign of EM gasfield activity once the development of the field has been completed. The bright yellow buoy, currently under construction by J Ray... 

Labour no-show at wage briefing

By: System Author     25th June 1999 The function to announce a landmark wage agreement between labour and employers in the metals industry had to be cancelled after the National Union of Metal-workers of South Africa failed to turn up. A joint labour-business briefing had been planned for 10:00 last Friday at Dorbyl House in... 

‘Jobs’ vs ‘careers’ in South Africa’s changing work environment

By: System Author     25th June 1999 Over the last two decades, attitudes towards and expectations of ‘careers’ and ‘jobs’ have changed substantially. In a bygone era, you joined a company in your youth and stayed till retirement. But the whole working environment has changed: nowadays a ‘career’... 

Industry must get its act together

By: System Author     25th June 1999 What industries is your company most active in? We work with companies to improve performance through training and development. The key people who can improve company performance are supervisors and managers, as they are responsible for the most important resource – people. Our core... 

Window of opportunity for primary producers

By: System Author     25th June 1999 A global shortage of secondary alum- inium is predicted between 2000 and 2007, which could provide good opportunities for local primary aluminium producers such as Billiton and Mozal, argues CSIR Centre for Product Development spokesperson Dr Oliver Damm. The centre is part of the... 

Latest Mozal contracts secured

By: System Author     25th June 1999 Turnkey refractory specialist the Dickinson group, of Vereeniging, Gauteng, has been awarded the cathode-sealing and potlining contracts for the Mozal aluminium smelter at Maputo in Mozambique. The former is for 5 820 graphite cathodes, and the latter for 291 AP 30 pots. Through its Kwazulu-Natal... 

Agency for Italian profile-rolling machines secured

By: System Author     25th June 1999 Tube-bending and sawing-equipment specialist Vite Machine Tools, of Jet Park, Gauteng, has landed the agency for the CS series of profile-rolling machines from SAF Curvatrici of Italy. This series of rolling machines has been designed specifically for the cold- rolling of aluminium profiles into... 

Managing solutions for the aluminium sector

By: System Author     25th June 1999 Industrial-information systems specialist Keops Isis, of Centurion, Gauteng, is the leading provider of operations-management solutions (OMS) in the primary aluminium production sector of Southern Africa. OMS – including manufacturing execution systems (MES) – bridges the gap between... 

Millennium challenge for aluminium

By: System Author     25th June 1999 There is no doubt that the start of the new millennium holds many things for South Africa as a whole, and the aluminium industry in particular, says John Askeland, newly-elected chairperson of the Aluminium Federation of Southern Africa (Afsa). “Some are clearly opportunities; some are... 

SA aluminium prospects shine brightly

By: System Author     25th June 1999 What is the current state of the local aluminium industry? At the semi-fabrication level the aluminium industry is about R8-billion a year – to some extent this depends on the ruling London Metal Exchange price. This includes an allowance for the importation of alumina, so I am talking... 

Export markets offer lifeline to local firms

By: System Author     25th June 1999 Only those local companies that have succeeded in establishing export markets are doing well; the higher the proportion of their sales that are local, the more these companies will be battling right now, observes Zimco Aluminium (Zimalco) MD Bruce Addison. Zimalco, of Benoni South, Gauteng, is... 

Drive to increase aluminium use in vehicles

By: System Author     25th June 1999 Leaders of the auto- motive and alu- minum industries have unveiled plans to create an inter-industry alliance to promote collaborative research to accelerate the use of new and improved aluminum technologies for motor vehicles. This initiative, called the Auto Aluminum Alliance, includes members... 

Extrusion technology for new millennium

By: System Author     25th June 1999 What’s next in aluminium extrusion technology for the new millennium will be unveiled at the seventh yearly Aluminium Extrusion Technology Seminar & Exposition, ET 2000, to be held in Chicago in the US from May 16 to 19, 2000. The event – which is the longest-running event dealing... 

Alu-cans strike gold

By: System Author     25th June 1999 In just five years since the introduction of the aluminium beverage can to South Africa, the recycling of these cans has grown into a multimillion-rand industry. Aluminium Can Recycling Association (Acra) GM Henning Viljoen indicates that the yearly recovery rate of aluminium beverage cans in... 

Lowest-cost aluminium corrosion control

By: System Author     25th June 1999 The new Sulzer Metco SmartArc arc spray system has been designed to produce the lowest-cost aluminium corrosion-control coatings available in industry today. This has been achieved by the redesign of the arc head to ensure a low-turbulence air flow, resulting in higher deposit efficiencies, lower... 

‘Do-it-yourself’ aluminium welding promoted

By: System Author     25th June 1999 Aluminium welding can be catered for by a process called Techno-Weld, an innovative aluminium fusion-welding and repair process now available in South Africa. It is described as a breakthrough in welding with aluminium, and is a low-temperature (380?C) system which fusion-welds virtually all... 

Imported profiles now made in South Africa

By: System Author     25th June 1999 Automation specialist RM Automation, of Randburg, Gauteng, has opted for local manufacture of aluminium profiles previously imported at high cost. These profiles are required to build various frameworks used, in turn, to build special-purpose machinery for clients, turnkey projects, or system... 

Joint agreement to market furnaces

By: System Author     25th June 1999 An agreement to market oxy-fuel-fired tilting rotary furnaces to aluminium and other non-ferrous melting and processing customers worldwide has been signed by Air Products & Chemicals (APCI) and Altek International. Under the agreement, Air Products’ proprietary oxy-fuel combustion controls... 

Smelter strives to keep rising costs at bay

By: System Author     25th June 1999 Intended to assist in securing Bayside Aluminium’s position in the global aluminium market, a business process re-engineering exercise undertaken by Deloitte Consulting is realising substantial benefits for this Richards Bay smelter. “In a commodity market where prices are constantly... 

Novel plasma dross-treatment project hots up

By: System Author     25th June 1999 A dross-treatment project using plasma as the heat source is being researched by Eskom’s research and development section, Technology Research Investigations (TRI), together with an industrial partner. This type of system is already being operated by an international company in Canada using... 

Taiwanese aluminium cladding for industry

By: System Author     25th June 1999 The sole agent for world-class cladding product Alucomat is Norma Building Elements, of Southdale, Gauteng. Sourced from Jyi Shyang Industrial of Taiwan, the product has been hailed as a revolutionary and versatile decorative composite panel, developed for use in curtain-wall and cladding... 

Aluminium fabricators cut costs

By: System Author     25th June 1999 Correct process and gas selection can help aluminium fabricators reduce overall welding costs and improve productivity at the same time, argues a leading welding specialist. Afrox process development welding specialist Wayne Holt works in co-operation with Afrox clients to develop more efficient... 

Mozal is on schedule and within budget

By: System Author     25th June 1999 The Mozal aluminium smelter project at Maputo in Mozambique remains on schedule and on budget. Engineering exceeded the planned 4% progress for April, achieving 5%. Overall progress was on target at the end of April, with a total of 70%. The engineering department has now passed the peak work... 

Kwazulu-Natal aluminium expansion rolls on

By: System Author     25th June 1999 The next significant start-up milestone in Hulett Aluminium’s (Hulamin’s) multibillion-rand expansion in Maritzburg, Kwazulu-Natal, has been achieved on schedule following the successful coating of the first coil on the new continuous annealing and coil coating line (CCL2). Commenting... 

World record steel production achieved

By: System Author     25th June 1999 STAINLESS steel giant Columbus Steel, of Middelburg, has achieved a record production of 5 400 tons of stainless steel in three days. This achievement even exceeds the acceptance criteria of 51 heats in three days for the equipment. The steel melting plant was the first section of the Columbus... 

Local company wins madagascar wheel contract

By: System Author     25th June 1999 LOCAL company Rely Precision Casting has been awarded a contract to cast 1,4-m-diameter Pelton-wheels for Madagascar’s Mandraka power station. Through main contractors Sulzer, the company has been contracted to cast four stainless-steel wheels, which are required to build the two... 

IT system rollout in KZN

By: System Author     25th June 1999 SOFTWARE company AST Kwazulu-Natal has completed the redevelopment of all the core production application systems for Iscor’s integrated profile products steelworks in Newcastle, Kwazulu-Natal. The project once more confirms the effectiveness of the successful ‘big-bang’... 

Local metal-finishing industry welcomes cleaner production

By: System Author     18th June 1999 A process to develop a cleaner production (CP) project in the metal- finishing industry by September was started in March this year by the Danish Co-operation for Environment and Development (Danced). As a response to a pamphlet circulated within various industrial sectors to introduce CP methods... 

Mozal service provider wins accreditation

By: System Author     18th June 1999 Becoming the first Southern African wage bureau to achieve ISO 9002 accreditation is special, to do so while operating on site in a Third World environment must be unique. Established by Privest/ ABC Recruitment primarily to ensure the timely and correct payment of wages to each and every person... 

Major German merger benefits SA subsidary

By: System Author     18th June 1999 The merging of two large German companies – and a new alliance with a US engineering firm – has helped a wholly-owned South African subsidiary to win a refinery-upgrade contract. Following the coming together in Germany of steel contender Thyssen and stainless-steel giant Krupp,... 

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