Optimised process control and increased personnel safety during non-ferrous metal production

A non-ferrous metal is one that does not contain iron in appreciable amounts. The most widely used of all the non-ferrous metals is aluminium which has a remarkably low density and is able to resist corrosion. Structural components made from aluminium and its alloys are vital to the aerospace industry and are important in other areas of transportation and structural applications.
Promat provides arguably the widest range of thermal insulation products on the market, and in the aluminium industry specifically. We are the worldwide leading manufacturer of calcium silicate and microporous insulation. 

Primary aluminium
Primary aluminium is produced from aluminium oxide (alumina) obtained from bauxite, a widespread mineral. The primary aluminium production from alumina is based on an energy-intensive electrolytic process at a temperature of approximately 960 °C, where a high current is passed through the electrolytic bath to produce aluminium metal. Promat systems can help to make this high temperature process more thermally efficient and controllable.

Secondary aluminium
Recycled aluminium is known as secondary aluminium, but has the same physical properties as primary aluminium. Production of secondary aluminium consumes less than 5% of the energy needed to produce primary aluminium. It accounts for 33% of today’s global supply. Secondary aluminium is produced in a wide range of formats and is employed in 80% of alloy injections. Another important use is for extrusion. At every stage of secondary aluminium production and processing, a Promat insulation solution can help to control unnecessary heat losses and facilitate tighter process control.

The challenges for insulation used in aluminium manufacture and processing
  • Thermal management – energy loss control – optimise process control
  • Best possible control of heat loss
  • Resistance to thermal shock
  • Non-combustibility

  • Design for continuous high temperature operation without deterioration. Longest possible working life essential for insulation without excessive shrinkage or other impairment of performance
  • Easy installation of insulation components
  • Fast ROI (Return Of Investment) for insulation – cost effective system design

Promat can help solve all these design challenges. By choosing from the broadest product portfolio on the market based on the "best in class" insulation products with the lowest thermal conductivity, we can design an "engineered solution" that best meets all design challenges. We select from the very best microporous, calcium silicate, refractory and fibre insulation products available. We have purpose designed products specifically for the metals industries. A Promat insulation system cannot be beat on performance.

Application solutions

Carbon bake furnace

Carbon bake furnaces used in primary aluminum prepare baked anodes for use in the aluminum electrolysis process. These furnaces can be open or closed and consist of many chambers, flues and pits.

The Promat solution includes:
  • Hot face refractories in the form of PROMATON® refractory bricks and PROMACRETE® refractory concrete
  • High temperature fibres
  • MICROTHERM® Panel and PROMALIGHT® microporous insulation to walls

The benefits
  • Long service life, low maintenance and improved energy efficiency
Electrlytic reduction cells

The primary aluminum production takes place in electrolytic reduction cells where aluminium atoms are separated from oxygen atoms in the alumina molecule. The oxygen combines with the carbon anode and the freed aluminium atoms settle to the bottom of the cell as molten metal where it can be siphoned off, or tapped into tapping ladles. Proven insulation systems are resistant to Fluorised Aluminium, have high structural integrity, and very consistent thermal conductivity.

The Promat solution includes:
  • Hot face refractories in the form of PROMATON® refractory bricks
  • PROMACLAD® vermiculite boards
  • PROMASIL® calcium silicate insulation

The benefit :
  • Long service life, low maintenance and improved energy efficiency
Tapping & transport ladles

Tapping & transport ladles are used for transferring hot metal from the pot room to casthouse at aluminium smelters.

  • Hot face refractories in the form of PROMATON® refractory bricks and PROMACRETE® refractory concrete
  • Hydrophobic grade MICROTERHM® SLATTED panel and hydrophobic grade MICROTHERM® OVERSTITCHED panel

The benefit:
  • Long ladle life, improved energy efficiency, and operator safety
  • Temperature drop reduction during transportation/pre-casting – hence minimising need for reheat
Melting & holding furnace

Melting and holding furnaces prepare the aluminium for transfer to the refining and casting process.

The Promat solution includes:
  • Hot face refractories in the form of PROMACRETE® refractory concrete
  • PROMASIL® calcium silicate insulation
  • PROMAFORM® refractory ceramic fibre boards
  • MICROTHERM® and PROMALIGHT® back up insulation lining to reduce heat loss on overall lining thickness – energy saving & capacity

The benefit:
  • Long life and energy efficiency
Induction furnace

Induction furnaces use electricity to induction heat metals to their melting temperature.

The Promat solution includes:
  • DURATEC® structural calcium silicate boards

The benefits:
  • Energy efficiency
  • Thermal and electrical insulation
  • Are break proof
  • Withstand high temperatures to give long life
Alu transfer & refining

Promat manufactures pre-fabricated launder systems and filter boxes from our non-wetting range of structural calcium silicates. These are combined with lightweight and microporous insulation to optimise launder runs and process efficiency.

The Promat solution includes:
  • MONALITE® calcium silicate boards

The benefits:
  • Long life and process efficiency
  • Energy saving via efficient reduction of heat loss
Billet Casting
Our non-wetting structural calcium slicate components are widely used in casting tables worldwide. We can provide pins, floats and spouts for conventional pouring, or transition plates for the more modern billet casting process.

Continuous Casting
For continuous casting of sheet, feeder tips can be supplied to your specification from our in house machine shops from our range of non-wetting structural calcium silicates.