Alcoa Unveils World’s Largest Lithium-Aluminum Plant

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Lafayette, Ind., is now home to the world’s largest aluminum-lithium facility, a massive warehouse on a 170-acre, multi-building campus that took $90 million and 2 years of construction to create.

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Alcoa officially unveiled the new plant Thursday, one of three such facilities the aluminum giant is developing to better service the aerospace industry.

Called the Casting House, the plant will forge aluminum lithium alloys to be manufactured into wing skins, fuselage skins, wing stringers, floor beams and seat tracks for commercial jets built by Boeing, Airbus and Gulfstream. Earlier this year, Alcoa announced a $1.1 billion, multi-year contract with United Technologies’ Pratt & Whitney subsidiary to produce the first-ever aluminum alloy engine fan blades.

On Wednesday, October 1, the day’s biggest mover was the aluminum 3-month price, which saw a 1.1% increase on the LME to $1,969 per metric ton. This increase comes after the price fell for the two previous days. Following a 1.1% rise yesterday, the cash price of primary aluminum closed on the LME at $1,934 per metric ton. The Indian aluminum cash price saw a 0.8% decline to INR 120.55 ($1.95) per kilogram.

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Chinese aluminum prices closed flat for the day. For the fifth consecutive day, the price of Chinese aluminum scrap held flat at CNY 12,250 ($1,996) per metric ton. For the fifth day in a row, the price of Chinese aluminum billet remained essentially flat at CNY 13,590 ($2,214) per metric ton. The price of Chinese aluminum bar continues hovering around CNY 14,200 ($2,313) per metric ton for the fifth day in a row. The Chinese aluminum cash price remained essentially flat at CNY 13,960 ($2,274) per metric ton.

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