Hindalco to supply 1.2 million tonnes of red mud to UltraTech

Our Bureau Mumbai | Updated on August 20, 2020

Hindalco Industries, an Aditya Birla Group company, has entered into an MoU with UltraTech Cement, part of the same group, to deliver 1.2 million tonnes (mt) of red mud (also known as bauxite residue) annually. UltraTech will use the red mud in its 14 plants across seven States.

Hindalco is the first company to achieve 100 per cent usage of red mud generated across three of its refineries, said Hindalco in a statement on Thursday. Red mud generated in the alumina manufacturing process is rich in iron oxides, alumina, silica and alkali.

The cement industry has developed the capability to process red mud as a replacement for mined minerals such as laterite and lithomarge in its processes.

Hindalco is supplying red mud to UltraTech Cement plants where it has been proved to be an effective substitute for mined materials, successfully replacing up to 3 per cent of clinker raw mix volume.

Use of red mud reduces the cement industry’s dependence on natural resources and promotes a circular economy, said the Hindalco statement.

Hindalco’s alumina refineries are currently supplying 250,000 mt of bauxite residue to cement companies every month. In the current year, the company aims to achieve 2.5 mt of bauxite residue utilisation.

Last year, Hindalco had to shut production at its Muri alumina plant in Jharkhand for over eight months due to red mud slide at the storage area.

Satish Pai, Managing Director, Hindalco, said the company has built a strong customer base and supplies red mud to over 40 cement plants every month. Globally, 160 mt of red mud is produced annually and stored in large tracts of land which is a serious industry challenge.

To find a sustainable solution, Hindalco has invested in infrastructure and collaborated with cement companies with UltraTech Cement being a key partner.

KC Jhanwar, Managing Director, UltraTech Cement, said the company last year consumed about 15.73 mt of industrial waste as alternate raw material and about 300,000 tonnes as alternative fuel in its kilns. With the supply of red mud from Hindalco, Jhanwar said, the company expects to conserve over 1 mt of mined natural resources such as laterite in the manufacturing process.

Published on August 20, 2020

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