“With auto manufacturers switching to electric vehicles, combined with the growing need for aluminium, we see this as an opportunity to bring large-scale production of Hydro CIRCAL. We help forward-leaning customers reach their climate ambitions by delivering products with a lower carbon footprint that promote a more circular economy,” says Trond Gjellesvik, President of Hydro Aluminium Metal, North America.
Hydro is positioning itself to become the leading producer of low-carbon, recycled aluminium in North America. Recycling scrap aluminium requires only 5% of the energy used to produce primary aluminium, saving energy and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Hydro has set a 2025 strategic ambition to double its recycling of post-consumer scrap as it significantly reduces the CO2 footprint compared to pre-consumer/process scrap as well as primary aluminium.
Certified low-carbon aluminium
By adding capabilities to produce Hydro CIRCAL, Hydro will be able to supply more automotive, transportation, and other extrusion ingot customers with certified low-carbon aluminium.
“We are seeing interest from several aluminium extrusion companies and leading OEMs and look forward to partnering with them to further expand production of automotive products with Hydro CIRCAL at Commerce. This is a great recognition of the work being done by the team at Commerce and in North America,” says Dan Luckett, Plant Manager at Hydro Commerce. “We have been able to learn from the pioneering steps taken by Hydro to produce CIRCAL at our plant at Deeside in the UK and successfully implement that here in the U.S.”
The initial annual production of Hydro CIRCAL from Commerce is expected to be around 4,000 tonnes. The independent risk management and quality assurance company DNV-GL issued the certificate for production on May 18, 2022.
Accelerating automotive innovation and sustainability in North America
Hydro has been involved in recycling in the US for several decades beginning with its plants in Henderson, Kentucky and Commerce, Texas. In April, Hydro marked the next step forward on this path with the construction start of its state-of-the-art aluminium recycling plant in Cassopolis, Michigan. Production will commence in 2023 with approximately 70 employees. When ramped up to full production, the plant will produce 120,000 metric tonnes of recycled aluminium extrusion ingot per year.
Following completion of the Cassopolis plant, Hydro will have the ability to produce over one million metric tonnes of recycling-based aluminium extrusion ingot each year in the US, further strengthening its position as the largest producer of aluminium extrusion ingot in North America.
Hydro CIRCAL® is Hydro’s proprietary brand of recycled aluminium made with a minimum of 75% recycled, post-consumer aluminium scrap, certified by third-party auditors DNV GL, and has a market-leading CO2 footprint of just 2.3 kg CO2e/kg aluminium or less.
Through advanced sorting technology, Hydro is able to create advanced materials with the highest post-consumer recycled content in the market. As a result, Hydro drastically reduces energy use in the production phase while still offering high-quality aluminium with equivalent metallurgical properties that maintain the strong material and corrosion resistance needed in automotive components.