A busy month for India’s state-run metals firm National Aluminium Company (Nalco) continued yesterday when domestic media reported on the firm’s plans to open a high-end aluminium alloys plant.
Per the reportage, Nalco expects to incorporate technology developed by overseas parties in the plant, which the company will use to produce alloys for applications including high-speed trains, aerospace projects, and electric vehicles.
Nalco’s chairman and managing director Dr. Tapan Kumar Chand elaborated upon the company’s plans in an interview with Indian media.
“The technology for high end aluminium products plants is not available in India. So, we are in talks with potential suppliers in USA and Russia to avail their technologies. If we get the right technology, our proposed plant may come up within the aluminium park at Angul or somewhere closer to the site.”
Though the site is already under development with Odisha Industrial Infrastructure Development Corporation (Idco) on a 240-acre plot in the state, the technology partner has yet to be named. Nalco is currently awaiting responses from tech firms to its recently-released Expression of Interest (EoI).
This will not be Nalco’s first foray into the high-end aluminium alloy sector. The firm previously inked a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Defence Ministry’s specialized metals production arm Mishra Dhatu Nigam Limited (MIDHANI), and public-sector enterprises Hindustan Copper Ltd (HCL) and Mineral Exploration Corporation Ltd (MECL).
The three government entities have already approved in principle the idea of forming a joint venture to be called Khanij Bidesh India Ltd (KABIL). Nalco’s interest in the entity, which would be given the job of locating and processing several minerals unavailable in India to be alloyed with aluminium, would be 34 percent, with MCL and HCL each owning a 33-percent share.
The hunt for the minerals, which include tin, tungsten, titanium, gallium, lithium, tantalum, cobalt, niobium, selenium, and indium, would take place largely on the African continent.