ALBA to boost aluminum smelter production by 50 percent


Aluminium Bahrain B.S.C. (Alba) is expanding its primary aluminum production capacity with the Line 6 Expansion Project. Upon the full ramp-up of Potline 6 in 2019, the company’s smelter capacity will be increased by more than 50 percent, to 1.5 million tons a year. This investment will make Alba one of the largest aluminum smelters in the world.

Hertwich Engineering, a company of SMS group, has been awarded the contract for the necessary expansion of the homogenizing capacity. Alba has installed a total of six furnaces and ancillary equipment from Hertwich during the cooperation lasting more than two decades.

Now Hertwich has received an order to supply a modern batch homogenizing plant for Potline 5, which started operation in 2005, to upgrade the existing continuous homogenizing plant. This plant now on order is designed for an annual production of 60,000 tons of logs with diameters ranging from 152 to 254 millimeters, and lengths up to 8,100 millimeters. The furnace will be integrated into the material flow of the existing continuous homogenizing plant. The cooled logs will be de-stacked, separated, and tested in an ultrasonic inspection station, which is also part of Hertwich’s current scope of supply. The existing saw, and equipment for transport, stacking, strapping, etc., will be used for the new batch furnace as well.

For the new primary aluminum expansion project ‘Potline 6,’ the continuous and batch homogenizing furnace will be installed side-by-side so the production program can be organized flexibly at this point. The main component is the continuous homogenizing plant with an annual capacity of 140,000 tons. It is designed for logs up to 9 meters in length and diameters in the range from 152 to 410 millimeters. The batch homogenizing plant (charge weight: 85 tons) with separate cooling station will be installed next to the continuous homogenizing plant, so that both plants can operate in combination using the auxiliary equipment.

For the sawing, weighing, and packaging operations, Hertwich is to deliver transport and stacking/de-stacking equipment, a linear ultrasonic testing unit, two sawing units, two strapping and weighing stations, and two briquetting presses for chips.