Sohar Aluminium Continues to Investigate Potline Incident That Led to Shutdown

Sohar Aluminium Continues to Investigate Potline Incident That Led to Shutdown

Oman’s Sohar Aluminium is looking for answers after an accident at its plant led to a power outage of over six hours last week.

According to English-language media, an accident at the firm’s lone potline caused production to halt for 6-1/2 hours on August 4. Few details have emerged since then, but the CEO Said Al Masoudi indicated that power was cut only out of an abundance of caution. He assured the public at the time that the plant’s down time would be minimal.

“The accident will not affect long-term operations. Daily business will be held as soon as possible.”

Though long-term problems are not expected, short-term repercussions of the shut-down have rippled down the supply chain. Oman Cables Industry announced earlier this week that operations at Oman Aluminium Processing Industries have suffered as a result of a lack of needed liquid aluminium from Sohar Aluminium.

Yesterday the firm announced the assembly of an expert team of investigators to search for answers regarding the shut down. CEO Al Masoudi remained optimistic that the plant would resume full production soon, but offered no further details regarding the accident.

“The company has put together a team of industry experts to assess how quickly metal production can be restarted and a return to full production levels be restored as early as possible.”

Sohar Aluminium was founded in the fall of 2004 and is jointly owned by Oman Oil Company, Abu Dhabi National Energy Company PJSC – TAQA, and Rio Tinto Alcan. The firm operates a single ¾-mile potline with an operating current of 375kA and a nameplate capacity of 375 thousand metric tons per annum. Sohar also operates an on-site anode plant and a casthouse that uses both ingot and sow casting methods. The firm’s smelter was the first ever to implement Rio Tinto Alcan’s energy-efficient benchmark AP36 smelting technology.