In 2014, the company plans to produce its first scandium concentrate. Both new products will be produced at a large output rate.
In 2013 RUSAL’s R&D proposed a new technology, and a pilot production area was launched to test the red mud recycling process at UAZ that later resulted in quite a successful flux additives production initiative that supplied 1,000 mt of flux to MMK (Magnitogorsk), Tulachermet (Tula), Uralskaya Stal and Severstal Scandium concentrate will be used in production of scandium and aliminium alloys.
In March 2014 UAZ started building its own scandium concentrate capacities (two tonnes a year) that are scheduled to be commissioned and also to be put into operation immediately.
In 2014 the total investments on both projects will be RUR 74 mln.
“At this moment the project is at its most challenging stage because the company has completed the lab tests and wants to start large-scale operations. And the trial production has shown brilliant results, this is why we all believe that the project is really promising,” said Victor Mann, RUSAL’s Head of R&D and Technology.
The red mud recycling programme of UC RUSAL is absolutely in line with the Government’s supervised initiative that has defined the R&D agenda in Russia in general with all the priorities set clear for 2007-2013 and are coordinated by Russia’s Ministry of Education and Science. In 2012 alone, the Ministry gave RUR 35 mln on various research projects, and the company started its pilot area for recycling red mud at UAZ. Between 2011 and 2013 UC RUSAL invested RUR 190 mln in the recycling project.
UAZ is not the only plant for similar projects that UC RUSAL has chosen for the same equipment and technologies. The management team is studying proposals to recycle alumina production wastes at some other Russian and foreign sites of UC RUSAL.