China’s No.2 steelmaking hub Jiangsu escalates smog alerts, halves output (US)

BEIJING (Reuters) – Steel mills, coke plants and coal-fired utilities in China’s second-biggest steelmaking hub Jiangsu will have to slash their production capacity as the provincial authorities have escalated smog alerts for the next three days. Air pollution is expected to worsen from Nov. 27 until Nov. 30, triggering second-level orange smog alerts in the country’s four-level system, the Department of Ecology and Environment of Jiangsu Province said in a statement. Heavy industry in Jiangsu will have to cut more of their production capacity by at least 50 percent fromContinue reading

Constellium sent to arbitration over health-coverage clash (US)

A federal judge has ordered an aluminum processing company in West Virginia into arbitration over health coverage for retired employees. U.S. District Judge Thomas Johnston on Wednesday granted an injunction to prevent Constellium Rolled Products in Ravenswood from making changes to medical and prescription-drug coverage for 1,500 union retirees and their families.The company had no comment. Constellium does not comment on pending litigation, said Delphine Dahan-Kocher, vice president of public affairs and communications in North America for Constellium.

Arbitration was ordered by a federal judge in West Virginia between Constellium and retirees.  Judge Thomas Johnston on Wednesday also granted an injunction preventing the aluminum processing company in Ravenswood Continue reading

3-D printing eliminates undesirable trait in conventional superalloys (US)

Allison Beese, assistant professor of materials sciences and engineering at Penn State, sits in front of the control panel during her experimentation with 3D Inconel 635 at Oak Ridge National Laboratories. UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — An undesirable trait found in traditionally processed superalloys does not exist in a 3D-printed, nickel-based superalloy, according to a team of materials scientists who think this could lead to new manufacturing techniques that allow for alloys with tailored properties.  The trait, called dynamic strain aging (DSA), occurs in metals at high temperatures subjected to stress. In conventionally processed materials, if DSA is present, the strength of the material fluctuates with applied deformation, resulting in serrated stress-strain curves. Researchers, led by Allison Beese, assistant professor of materials sciences and engineering at Penn State, tested the 3D-printed Inconel 625Continue reading

Ascoval Saint-Saulve : Altifort a bouclé son offre de reprise (FR)

Altifort a déposé son offre en fin d’après-midi au tribunal de grande instance (TGI) de Strasbourg, a dit son directeur général Bart Gruyaert. La chambre commerciale du TGI statuera mercredi prochain sur le sort d’Ascoval, actuellement en redressement judiciaire. L’offre inclut un concours financier de 25 millions d’euros de l’État, qui était le dernier élément en suspens pour la finaliser, a précisé M. Gruyaert. “Nous avons aussi les accords des autres financeurs“, banques et collectivités, a-t-il ajouté. Le dossier qui sera examiné par le TGI prévoit plus de 400 emploispour Ascoval : le maintien des 281 existants et la création de 133 autres grâce à laContinue reading

Congo declares battery metal cobalt ‘strategic’ in move that triples royalties (US)

The Democratic Republic of Congo has declared its huge resources of electric car battery metal cobalt “strategic” and tripled the amount of money international miners need to pay the state for every tonne of metal they sell. The decree, which was promulgated as part of the country’s new mining code, will increase the royalties on cobalt from 3.5 per cent to 10 per cent, hitting some of the largest international miners such as Glencore and China Molybdenum. International miners have vociferously opposed the DRC’s new mining legislation, which was signed into law byContinue reading

Demand Isn’t The Problem For Carpenter Technology; Execution Is (US)

  • Carpenter is seeing very healthy demand trends in key markets like aerospace and energy, but is struggling to deliver impressive operating leverage.
  • The Athens ramp continues to drag on; management says it sees a greater sense of urgency among aero engine customers, but this has been a consistent source of frustration.
  • Carpenter looks undervalued and still has significant margin leverage potential, but management has to start executing on that potential in a more tangible way.

Although demand for specialty alloys has been strong almost across the board, progress remains shaky at best for Carpenter Technology (CRS), as the company’s earnings and cash flow are not reflecting what is actually a pretty healthy demand environment. To the extent it makes anybody feel better, Carpenter isn’t the only alloy company to take a beating in the market, as Carpenter, Universal Stainless (USAP), Haynes (HAYN), and Allegheny(ATI) have all been weak over the past six months as investors have been spooked by the 30% fall in nickel prices and the risk of Continue reading

Aluminum-scandium master alloys, changing the way the world flies (US)

Scandium has until now only been a niche metal with demand in high end products such as the aerospace industry and sports equipment (bicycle frames, fishing rods, golf iron shafts, tennis rackets and baseball bats). It has great potential as an alloy because it has almost as low a density as aluminum with a much higher melting point. Scandiumwhen added to aluminum, creates a strong lightweight alloy with excellent resistance to corrosion and good weldability. Aluminum-scandium alloy can be 10-100% stronger than conventional aluminum alloys and hasContinue reading

Sheffield Forgemasters hail order book strength after £16.4m loss (US)

Sheffield Forgemasters has now revealed a pre-tax loss of £16.4m for the year ending 31 December 2017, compared to a £900,000 loss the year before. This was the result of decision to accelerate the depreciation of the asset base of the company. Prior to this accounting change, the company recorded a pre-tax profit of £200,000 on revenue of £76.1m, up 4 per cent on the previous year.

The new executive team at Sheffield Forgemasters International has said that the engineering giant’s “buoyant order book” puts it in a position to achieve stronger levels of profitability in the future. However, an accounting change has resulted in a £16m pre-tax loss in its latest set of accounts. David Bond became the new chief executive in August 2018, succeeding Dr Graham Honeyman, who stepped down from the board in July. Bond has been joined by SteveContinue reading

Ellwood Group Pumps $200M into Operations (US)

The $60 million expansion at Ellwood Quality Steels in New Castle will house the company’s new remelt operations.

ELLWOOD CITY, Pa. – With all of its complexities, diverse business subsidiaries and integrated operations – plus tens of millions of dollars in new investment throughout the corporation – Ellwood Group Inc. remains at heart a down home family business, much like it was in when the company was founded here more than 100 years ago. In the years since, the company has expanded to 29 facilities across five states, Mexico and Canada and employs 2,000. But it has no intention of losing that tight-knit family approach, executives say. “I’m the fifth generation to work inContinue reading

EU Commission opens investigation about acquisition of VDM by Aperam in nickel alloy industry (US)

At this stage, the Commission is concerned that, following the transaction, customers would face reduced choice of suppliers, as well as higher prices, for nickel alloy plates and sheets, and for strips. VDM is already the market leader in these products and its position could be strengthened further through its merger with Aperam.The Commission will also investigate further whether the transaction could have an effect on the supply and prices of long nickel alloy products, namely nickel alloy wire and wire rod.

The European Commission has opened an in-depth investigation to assess the proposed acquisition of VDM by Aperam under the EU Merger Regulation. At this stage, the Commission is concerned that the merger may reduceContinue reading