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Metals & Engineering News

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,... 

So much complex technology hangs on a thread

By: System Author     18th June 1999 When you think about it, nuts and bolts play a vital, but seldom-recognised role in our lives. Although based on a simple helical thread, they represent a highly complex niche of technology, which impinges on virtually every facet of the manufacturing industry. The Greek mathematician Archimedes... 

Steel giant sells off refractories business

By: System Author     18th June 1999 Steel giant Iscor has announced an agreement with the Hernic Industrial group for the sale of its refractories business as part of an ongoing strategy to divest itself of its non-core assets. Executive chairperson Hans Smith states that the sale would release more than R100-million and is in line... 

Dect installation

By: System Author     11th June 1999 Aluminium producer Bayside Aluminium has invested in digital enhanced cordless technology (Dect) to facilitate mobile communications at its Richards Bay operations. Implemented in two phases, the project incorporated the supply of private automatic branch exchange (PABX) equipment developed and... 

Global welding machine order

By: System Author     11th June 1999 DANISH company Migatronic has won an order to supply welding machines worldwide to bodyshops repairing the new Ferrari Modena. The contract, awarded by Ferrari itself, was hotly contested by three European welding-machine manufacturers ahead of the launch of the aluminium sportscar in March this... 

R7,5m medical campus project

By: System Author     11th June 1999 A R7,5-million project to construct a new Lung Institute building on the UCT medical campus in Cape Town, is progressing well. Located near the start of the Settlers Freeway, the building will be used for patient consultation and research and will be able to handle 300 day patients. An X-ray... 

Moves to drive catalytic converters further

By: System Author     11th June 1999 Producers of one the main components of a catalytic converter, the ceramic substrate, have been approached by members of the South African catalytic converter industry, together with the Catalytic Converter Interest Group (CCIG), Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), and the Stainless Steel... 

Significant upgrades on the go at Saldanha

By: System Author     11th June 1999 The multipurpose and iron-ore terminals at Saldanha are undergoing significant upgrades aimed at increasing throughput capacities at the port in order to cope with heightened export volumes from Saldanha Steel, due to come on-line later this month, as well as an upsurge in shipping demand from... 

Frail SA foundries mull over Swedish ‘lifeline’

By: System Author     11th June 1999 The introduction locally of Swedish technology could see foundries switching to a new input raw material which reportedly holds significant benefits for the frail foundry industry. This follows a R7,8-million investment by foundry and engineering business Thos Begbie & Company in Middelburg,... 

Innovative techno for jetty construction

By: System Author     11th June 1999 PILING for the new dry bulk terminal jetty at Richards Bay, part of the third export expansion project, has been constructed using technology never before seen in a South African marine application. It involved the use of an environment-friendly polymer drilling fluid which poses no threat to... 

Steel under pressure

By: System Author     11th June 1999 STEEL export markets have been under severe pressure as a result of the drop in demand in the Far East and large-scale dumping of surplus production particularly by Japan, Korea and ex CIS countries. US dollar export prices in respect of hot-rolled coil have now reached the level of US$180 (Fobs)... 

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