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New research project launched on aluminium production in Qatar

A research project on aluminium production in Qatar has been launched by the Materials Technology Unit (MTU) at the Qatar University, the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU), the Qatalum aluminium company and Hydro.

The project has been awarded funding from Qatar Foundation and a kick-off meeting was recently arranged in Qatar. Seven students from Qatar University will take part in the project, where three of the students are qataris.

The kick-off meeting included presentations of aluminium production at MTU, a visit to Qatalum including the electrolysis, the anode plant, the casthouse and the laboratory as well as a hands-on session at the MTU metallurgy laboratory on aluminium sample preparation under supervision of experienced technicians from NTNU and Qatar University.

The overall aim of the project is to enhance the specific competence relevant to the aluminium industry in Qatar.

The topics of the project activities for the seven students are on foundry alloys and extrusion billets and the upcoming challenges regarding increased levels on critical trace elements. Hydro and Qatalum experts will act as supervisors for the students together with personnel from Qatar University and NTNU.

Hydro has over the last two years supported the Qatar University by funding Professor Halvor Kvande, a former Hydro researcher, to teach young students about aluminium electrolysis. The further plan is to establish R&D projects at the university in Qatar related to aluminium electrolysis and anode production to support the Qatalum aluminium plant.

In December, the Norwegian University of Science and Technology and Qatar University also signed a MoU agreement, supported by Qatalum and Hydro. This MoU is the first agreement ever between NTNU and an arabic university with the ambition to educate Masters’ students for future recruitment to Qatalum.

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