Onsite Aluminum Recycling Plant Saves Energy for Alcoa
Alcoa spent $21 million to expand its Wheel and Transportation Products facility at its Barberton, Ohio, plant and now expects to cut in half the total amount of energy used to recycle aluminum for forged wheels.
Construction of the new 50,000-sq-foot casthouse began in July 2011 and is now running at full capacity. The casthouse takes chips and solids from an existing Alcoa wheel machining plant on the same campus in Barberton, as well as from Alcoa’s Cleveland forging plant, and recycles them into aluminum billets, which are then forged into wheels.
The casthouse is expected to significantly reduce energy use through a combination of process improvements and reduced transportation needs. Because the casthouse is located on the same campus as a production facility, it has resulted in dramatic reductions in transportation needs, leading to a nearly 90 percent cut in transportation-related energy use.
Alcoa would not provide details about its average energy bills or the return on investment of the casthouse.
The project is also part of the Department of Energy’s Better Buildings Challenge, through which Alcoa will share best practices, such as linking energy goals to compensation, to help other companies reduce their industrial energy intensity. The Department of Energy’s Better Buildings Challenge is a program that helps companies identify innovative energy efficient solutions for their buildings and plants.
In terms of saving energy via transportation fuel, Kroger recently built an onsite anaerobic conversion system to help power its Ralphs/Food 4 Less distribution center in Compton, Calif. By siting the anaerobic system at the Ralphs distribution center, the same Kroger trucks that deliver food to grocery stores can bring food waste back, saving the company transportation fuel.
Why bring buildings online? What information can operations teams glean from real-time data that they can’t just get from the monthly data provided by utility companies? Click to learn more.
- Existing Building Technologies Combine for Increased Savings
- Best Practices in Electricity Procurement
- 2014 Environmental Leader Product and Project Awards
- Energy Financing Report
- Unlocking the Value of Energy & Operational Data
- Improve Your Company's Environment and Energy Performance
- Combined Heat and Power
- Smart Companies Utilize Integrated Energy Solutions
- How "Fixed" is the Fixed Price Product?
- 2013-2014 Winter Polar Vortex
- Cut Costs and Improve Facility Operations with Energy Data
- Energy Procurement Strategies for Winter 2014 and 2015
- Energy Efficiency Requires Engineering Efficiency
- Integrated Building Optimization: A Crucial Convergence of Demand-side and Supply-Side Energy Management Strategies
- Driving Productivity and Profit with Industrial Energy Management