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.
KSP AluGreen aims at developing new knowledge enabling Aluminium (AL) to be one of the main material bases in future green and sustainable industry contributing to reversing current excessive resource consumption and lowering CO2 emissions. AluGreen will move the research frontier towards increased amount of recycled aluminium in a variety of products, without downgrading of properties such as conductivity, strength, formability, fatigue, and corrosion resistance. The competence to be developed will enable production of products, ranging from automotive components to cables and large constructions, with increased fraction of recycled metal as well as increased use of multiple recycled aluminium. By establishing a recycling-oriented alloy design, new product design strategies combined with enabling green material processing technologies we aim to ensure recycled aluminium with the same properties and performance as aluminium alloys made from virgin metal. The project will also focus on a value chain shift from a linear business model to a circular business model, by developing knowledge and solutions enabling efficient circular material flow utilising innovative business models. The project represents a holistic approach and will include a knowledge platform combining the results from the project with decision support tools and technology enablers.