AluGreen aims to develop knowledge, innovations and demonstrators for circular aluminum products based on post-consumer scrap aluminum and renewable energy. There is a growing demand for aluminum worldwide, especially related to markets such as construction, electrification and transport. This trend gives Norwegian industry, and the aluminum community of expertise, a great opportunity to increase product value creation beyond being a sole exporter of primary metal, where material properties such as circularity, corrosion resistance, light weight, formability and mechanical properties are attractive and important contributions to the green transition.
The project assembles industry partners, representing the three afore-mentioned value chains, as well as the research partners NTNU, SINTEF, Sintef Manufacturing and Manufacturing Technology Norwegian Catapult. The industry consortium consists of Kodyna, Nexans, Ocean Sun, Corvus Energy, Norcable, Statnett, Benteler, Metallco, Leirvik, Christie, Prodtex, Oshaug Metall, Dr Techn. Olav Olsen, Nordic and Overhalla Betongbygg.
AluGreen embodies a competence building project (KSP), focusing on fundamental R&D, and in total seven applied R&D sub-projects for piloting and demonstrating new processes and products. One of the main challenges is that post-consumer scrap contains a mix of aluminum alloys, particles and trace-elements of other metals and unwanted substances. This increased variation in material quality compared to primary metal must be understood and compensated through downstream processes such as sorting, remelting, extrusion, rolling, forming, joining etc, finally complying to customer product requirements. AluGreen targets a post-consumer scrap content of close to 100% in construction, 40% in automotive components, and 10% in electrical conductors. This can reduce the overall CO2e footprint by 50-80%, given that criteria for renewable energy, circular material flows, and product properties are met.
Aluminium (Al) is a circular material, capable of being recycled over-and-over without losing its original properties such as lightness, conductivity, formability, durability, impermeability and multiple recyclability. This makes it a vital resource for a climate neutral and circular economy, and a selected material for future applications in key sectors across Europe. To unleash this potential, we need to change from today’s linear thinking to circular solutions for the material, processes, value chains and end-of-life decisions. The AluGreen ambition is to explore, develop, and pilot high value true circular Al products, based on post-consumer Al scrap (PCS) and renewable energy, exported from Norwegian value chains with high degree of automation and skilled workers. The ambition supports the roadmap outlined by Prosess21, European Aluminium and the European Green Deal initiative in transforming the Al-based industry towards circular economy. AluGreen addresses the largest and fast growing, market segments for Al, Construction, Electrification and Automotive, and post consumer scrap contents up to 100% in end-user application. Pilots will be demonstrated within road- and energy infrastructure, electric engines, battery protection systems and concrete reinforcement. Estimated effects of the Platform is to reduce the CO2e by 50-80%, increase export added value of Al based circular products by 7 bNOK/y, and to create at least 1500 green, sustainable and high skilled jobs.