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Showing posts from July, 2016

Packaging is more than what meets the eye

Packaging is perhaps the first impression for many products across the world. Packaging may include the shape, size, design and carries the visual identity of the brand with it.  See them anywhere, you will be instantly able to identify the product and in some cases even the brand. Take for example these products: 1 2 Have you guesses them correctly? We’re sure you would have. That is the power of a good packaging asset for a company. Innovation in packaging vastly improves the quality and functionality of certain products. When the milk companies were grappling with the complaints for milk turning sour and unhealthy, tetrapak packaging came to the rescue. No longer did people have to keep milk under supervision like they did earlier. Tetra pak containers Paper, plastic, glass and other materials have been used for packaging products since a long time. However, the revolution came with the arrival of aluminum as a medium. No longer did one have to worry

Aviation without aluminium is literally unimaginable

An aircraft in the making When an aircraft designer embarks on a plan to make a plane, there are a million things which come at play. However, everything else falls into place around three main conditions – a light weight body, a rust free durable frame, and high fuel efficiency. A metal that checks all the boxes is Aluminium. Aluminium used in plane body Aluminum makes up for about 80% of the modern aircraft. An alloy, known as Duralumin, was later developed by a German aircraft designer who showed its remarkable properties. The alloy if treated with heat for a long time would eventually become stronger than aluminium, a process known as distressing. Since then aluminium has found its way from wing panes to exhaust pipes in the aircraft. The cockpit panels, passenger seats and even the interior of the engine turbines employ aluminium in one form or the other. Let us know a few alloys which find use in aviation. There are specific series of aluminum a

Incredible architectures employing aluminium at their core of design

Aluminium has become one of the most popular materials among builders, architects and designers in the modern times. The sheer versatility of using aluminium in construction has made it an indispensable component of architecture. It is highly resistant to corrosion. It also has the added benefit of being a third lighter than steel with comparable strength.  Three quarters of the estimated 900 million tonnes of aluminium produced since 1880 is still in productive use, 35% of which is in building construction. Why Aluminium in construction The architectural use of aluminum came about in the 1920s, mainly for decorative detailing. It was used for roofing, flashing, gutters, downspouts, wall panels, and spandrels. Window Spandrel It’s a well-known fact that the first extensive use of aluminum in construction was the Empire State Building. The entire tower portion is aluminum, as well as many decorative features, such as the entrances, elevator doors, ornamental trim

Recycling aluminum for a greener planet

Aluminum recycling is probably the best thing which contributes towards the creation of a greener planet. Unlike other metals and plastics, aluminium is 100 per cent recyclable. The metal can be melted down and reformed without losing any quality over and over again. In fact, aluminium has been recycled for nearly 100 years now and commands a high value on scrap market and this drives collection for further recycling. Aluminum, after being recycled, has exactly the same properties as new but takes just five per cent of the energy to produce. Would you believe that an incredible 75 per cent of the metal ever made is still in use today? It is true. The metal can be reused in the production of a multitude of different products, ranging from cars to window frames, and from aeroplanes to foil trays. This endless reuse cycle is also known as ‘closed loop’ recycling. It is thus good to know about the recycling process of the ‘green’ metal. Collection Cans, foils, aerosols

The choice is clear - Aluminium body for high end smartphones

A lot of phone companies are trying to build slim and sturdy phones for the ever growing market of steroid enhanced hardware capabilities. With phone manufacturers stuffing more RAM and precision cameras in the modern phones, the weight and robustness of the frames becomes all the more important. Today, some manufactures prefer a fiber body to reduce the overall weight in comparison to metal bodies. However, there’s something which still draws a larger advocacy of using aluminium bodies instead of a plastic or fiber. In 2007, Apple CEO Steve Jobs penned an open letter highlighting changes to the company's environmental policy in hopes of achieving "a greener Apple." In the letter, Jobs specifically noted the Mac maker's adoption of aircraft-grade aluminum in order to improve recycling uptake. Apart from the cost reduction implications, Apple is strongly in favor of aluminium usage in all its products for improving its year on year recycling capabilities with

A brief history: Aluminium Applications

Aluminium is omnipresent! Since its discovery, Aluminium has been at the core of human development stories across the globe. It is quite a feat actually how a metal not occurring in purest form in nature can be crafted into a multi utility super metal within just one and half centuries of development. Just to give you a glimpse of its beauty, here's a full aluminum body which is the talk of the entire world The Apple iPhone To school kids, this might seem a bit mundane. They have been memorizing this since their class 6 chemistry books featured it in schools. Aluminium - 'Al' But there’s more to it than just the numbers. Let’s come outside the textbooks and into the real world. Here are some really interesting facts that will open your minds towards the history of the silvery shiny metal’s usage. As the metal resembled silver and it was light and expensive, during Napoleon III’s reign, aluminium was considered an elite material intended for o

Vedanta’s import substitute billets give a fillip to Make In India

Vedanta is a major producer of high grade aluminium and various other products such as billets and ingots, which are supplied to secondary fabrication units. Although Vedanta has been a significant billet manufacturer for a long time, the requirement spelt out by a new customer - Vikas Altech was a huge challenge. Even today, the micro tubes in automotive radiators are manufactured from copper. Due to ever changing needs of the customer segments, these tubes are now required to be made from special alloys in which aluminium is the base metal. The application called for a special alloy and that too with a specific post treatment process (homozanization cycle). It also called for specific changes in the casting process like the filtration mechanism, changing the filters from 40ppi to 50ppi, additional degassing process etc. All these actions were important since the end-product to be extruded was of a very thin and hollow profile used in automotive air conditioning heat exchang

AAI hosts the national seminar on Aluminium - The Strategic Metal

What’s up? What had you been up to this week? I’d been to the national level seminar on ‘ Aluminium – The Strategic Metal ’ this Thursday. It was organised by the Aluminium Association of India (AAI) and presided over by the Union Mines Secretary - Mr. Balwinder Kumar and others. It was quite interesting to know about developments in the aluminum industry. Plus the venue was Hotel Mayfair. Who could miss that? Now tell me what happened there? In the welcome address by Dr. TK Chand, the president of AAI and CMD of NALCO, he began by pointing out that Aluminium metal is always associated with 3 important words – ‘Strategic, Green & Future’. The metal has numerous applications and that Odisha has more than half of the country’s bauxite reserves. However, all is not well at the moment. Sluggish market conditions, vagaries of the commodity cycle, cheap imports from China & the Middle East has hit the Indian Aluminum Industry quite badly. Even though