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February 18, 2014

Air Products provides oxy-fuel solution to recycled-copper manufacturers

Gerald Ondrey

Air Products (Lehigh Valley, Pa.; www.airproducts.com) has recently signed contracts with more than 20 recycled-copper manufacturers in China to provide its oxy-fuel solution, and about half of them are already onstream and running. The solution helps to improve productivity and material qualities compared to conventional air-fuel technologies, as well as decrease harmful emissions and reduce energy consumption and fuel cost throughout the operation.

Air Products’ oxy-fuel solution for recycled copper includes the supply of oxygen, a patented oxy-fuel burner, and fully integrated control equipment. In addition, the company provides computational simulations with advanced visualization techniques, as well as services such as commissioning, process optimization, maintenance, safety training, engineering support, and in-depth knowledge and expertise in copper smelting.

Dashan Copper, a leading scrap copper recycling company in Tianjin, Northern China, is the first to use Air Products’ oxy-fuel solution in China. The adoption has resulted in about two-thirds savings in fuel consumption, reduced emissions and enhanced operational flexibilities.

Jinlong Group, a leader in scrap metal recycling in Hunan Province, Southern China, has seen a significant decrease in fuel consumption as well as a reduction of nitrogen oxide emissions after using Air Products’ oxy-fuel solution.

Sustainability has become a major theme for China’s economic and social development, and the recycling economy is playing an increasingly important role as advocated by the Chinese government. The recycling and re-use of non-ferrous metals, particularly for copper, is seen as a green and high-growth industry to improve productivity and efficiency while reducing waste and emissions. According to China’s Five Year Plan for Non-ferrous metals industry, recycled copper will represent 40% of copper production by 2015. However, recycled copper manufacturers are facing increasing challenges of rising raw material costs and stringent environmental regulations while they try to stay competitive and achieve sustainable growth.

 

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