Altech reveals green credentials for HPA production
Altech Chemicals’ green credentials for its disruptive new kaolin clay-based high purity alumina production processes appear to stack up well against the industry standard alkoxide process that uses high-grade aluminium metal as a feedstock, according to the Perth based company. Altech says its numbers show that its HPA process produces substantially fewer greenhouse gas emissions and consumes much less energy per tonne of HPA produced.
The company recently undertook a detailed study of its mine-to-gate processes to compare the greenhouse gas emissions and energy consumption from the two production methods – its own method and the industry standard method. Altech’s single step kaolin-alumina HPA production process was compared to the industry standard alkoxide process that goes from bauxite to refinery to smelter to alkoxide and consumes high-grade aluminium metal.
Altech’s study showed that its process will release 46 per cent fewer greenhouse gases per tonne of HPA when compared to the industry standard method. The company also said its carbon footprint per tonne of HPA will be only 54 per cent of the industry standard and consume 41 per cent less energy per tonne.
Altech’s direct process involves the extraction of high purity alumina from a kaolin clay feedstock that will come from Meckering in Western Australia. The process uses a hydrochloric acid based chemical process to break down the kaolin. Industry standard processes use a more expensive aluminium metal as the feedstock for making high purity alumina.
According to Altech, kaolin feedstock is extremely “clean” with very low levels of iron compared to bauxite which generates large amounts of red mud waste. The company also said that nearly 100% of the hydrochloric acid used in its chemical process is recycled and reused in the processing plant. Another advantage is that all heating in the plant uses clean natural gas as a fuel.
Altech is readying itself for the expected global surge in lithium-ion battery sales with its high purity alumina product able to be used as a separator between the anodes and cathodes in lithium batteries.
It can also be used in low energy using LED lighting, another green wave that is sweeping the globe.
Being able to also boast green credentials in its manufacturing processes is really the final piece of the puzzle for Altech who will now doubt be front and centre in multiple green markets in the years to come.
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Altech Chemicals (ATC)
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