Renewables for industryProject Mechanical Vapour Recompression for Low Carbon Alumina Refining
In this spotlight interview, Ray Chatfield, Global Technical Manager of Refining Energy at Alcoa of Australia, talks about the company’s decarbonisation targets and initiatives with a specific focus on the low carbon alumina refining project at the Wagerup refinery.
In the first project of its type in Australia, Alcoa will trial a new way of generating steam required for the refining of naturally occurring bauxite material into alumina that can be smelted into aluminium. Known as Mechanical Vapour Recompression (MVR), this process uses renewable energy to recycle waste steam that would otherwise be exhausted to the atmosphere.
MVR represents an opportunity to electrify a refining process that is currently powered by fossil fuels using a renewable solution – addressing ARENA’s investment priority of helping industry to reduce emissions as well as the Government’s Technology Investment Roadmap. This is an important step on the pathway towards green aluminium in Australia.