09 September 2010

Alcan Extrusions and Automotive Structures supplies 100 km of Energy Saving Aluminium Power Rail for the New Metro in Bangalore

Alcan  Extrusions  and  Automotive  Structures,  part  of  Alcan  Engineered  Products  -  a business unit of Rio Tinto - has been granted a contract to supply 100 km of aluminium power rail for a new metro project in the Indian metropolis Bangalore. Deliveries over a period of 24 months have started in June 2010  

In addition to the production of the aluminium power rail system, Alcan will also provide an engineering and service package through the Railtech-Alu-Singen Joint-Venture. This Joint-Venture,  founded  by  Alcan  Singen  GmbH  and  Railtech  International  in  2003,  is  a recognized global market leader in the segment of aluminium power rail solutions. 

The field for aluminium power rails is a growing market with a great potential. The global demand for means of transport is increasing and many cities are extending their existing subway net or planning new lines,” said Paul Warton, President of Alcan Extrusions and Automotive  Structures,  and  added:  “significant  energy  savings  can  be  achieved  by  the use of the high electric conductivity of aluminium.” 

Power  rails  (conductor  rails)  are  used  as  contact  line  systems.  The  electrical  power  is transferred from substations to the rolling stock through a collector shoe located on the superstructure  of  the  train  vehicle.  The  power  rail  consists  of  an  aluminium  body  for electrical   conduction   and   a   stainless   steel   inlet   providing   the   required   abrasion resistance.  The two different materials are  extruded together in a  complex  co-extrusion process, which is unique for this type of application. Aluminium provides a lower specific electrical resistance, an improved conductivity and a largely reduced weight compared to a soft iron solution only. 

By 1000 km of aluminium power rails installed, compared with steel rails, about 700,000 tonnes  of  green-house  gas  will  be  saved  during  a  life  time  of  30  years.  One  kg  of aluminium used in rails saves about 37 kg of green-house gas and is afterwards recycled to new aluminium.  

The City of Bangalore has decided to build this DC powered railway system to relieve the high level of traffic congestion currently experienced. This sub-urban train will consist of two completely new rail lines mainly to be built on stilts.  

About Alcan Extrusions and Automotive Structures 

Alcan  Extrusions  is  a  key  player  in  the  European  market,  focusing  on  specialty products.  It  supplies  a  variety  of  hard  and  soft  alloy  extrusions,  including  technically advanced   products,   to   the   automotive,   industrial,   energy,   electrical   and   building industries,  and  to  manufacturers  of  mass  transport  vehicles  and  shipbuilders  It  has production facilities in France, Germany, Switzerland, the Czech Republic and Slovakia. 

Automotive Structures serves major automotive and transportation manufacturers with advanced   technology,   develops   and   manufactures   aluminum   crash   management systems,    front-end    components,    cockpit    carriers    and    body-in-white    structural components.  It  serves  customers  in  Europe,  North  America  and  China  with  innovative and cost-effective aluminum solutions. 

About Alcan Engineered Products 

Alcan  Engineered  Products  is  a  global  sector-leader  strongly  committed  to  developing innovative,   value-added   aluminium   products   for   a   broad   scope   of   markets   and applications,  including  aerospace,  mass  transportation,  automotive,  packaging,  energy and building. With around  10,000 employees located in 26 countries and a  commercial presence in more than 60 markets across Europe, the Middle East, Africa, the Americas and the Asia-Pacific region, Alcan Engineered Products is organised around businesses dedicated to performance materials in the areas of aluminium rolled products, extrusions and automotive structures, and international trade.  

About Rio Tinto  

Rio Tinto is a leading international mining group headquartered in the UK, combining Rio Tinto plc, a London and NYSE listed company, and Rio Tinto Limited, which is listed on the Australian Securities Exchange. 

Rio Tinto's business is finding, mining, and processing mineral resources. Major products are  aluminium,  copper,  diamonds,  energy  (coal  and  uranium),  gold,  industrial  minerals (borax, titanium dioxide, salt, talc) and iron ore. Activities span the world but are strongly represented in Australia and North America with significant businesses in South America, Asia, Europe and southern Africa. 

Download the press release

Alcan EAS supplies 100 km of Energy Saving Aluminium Power Rail for the New Metro in Bangalore (PDF)

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