Russia: City Bratsk - The Aluminium factory (00:02:03)
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Russia: City Bratsk - The Aluminium factory

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Russia, Bratsk, 1993


Bratsk (Russian: Братск) is a city in Irkutsk Oblast, Russia, located on the Angara River near the vast Bratsk Reservoir. Population: 259,335 (2002 Census). Although the name sounds like the Russian word for 'brother' ('brat'), it actually comes from 'bratskiye lyudi', an old name for the Buryats The Aluminium industry in Russia was arguably founded on 14 May 1932 when the Volkhov smelter in the Leningrad Oblast produced its first batch of aluminium. One year later, the first aluminium was produced by the Dneprovsky smelter in Ukraine. Despite the fact that in later years these smelters were steadily boosting output, it was not enough to meet the growing demands of the economy and construction of new production facilities in Russia began. In 1938, the 40,000 Mtpa Tikhvin Alumina Refinery was put into operation (today known as the Boxitogorsk Alumina Refinery), and in 1939 the Uralsk Aluminium and Alumina Complex was commissioned with an annual capacity of 70,000 Mt of alumina and 25,000 Mt of aluminium. World War II spurred industrial development in the eastern regions of the country. Faced with the threat of having a significant part of the state’s territories occupied by the enemy, the Soviet government ordered evacuation of production facilities on an unprecedented scale. The main equipment of the Volkhov and Tikhvin smelters was disassembled and transported to the Urals and Western Siberia where it was used to construct the Bogoslovsk and Novokuznetsk aluminium smelters. In 1943, the Novokuznetsk smelter produced its first aluminium in Siberia. Two years later, on 9 May 1945 – the Victory Day – the Bogoslovsk aluminium smelter also produced its first metal. During the post-war period the demand of the Soviet economy for strategic metals continued to grow, prompting a rapid development of the aluminium industry. In the 1950s, the Kandalaksha (1951), Nadvoitsy (1954) and Volgograd (1959) smelters were commissioned, as well as the Belaya Kalitva metals production facility (1954) which specialises in aluminium alloy-based products. In 1960, the Samara metal works began operations; today it is the largest producer of aluminium semi-finished and finished products in Europe. In addition to aluminium smelters and processing plants, the USSR was simultaneously engaged in the construction of alumina refineries. In 1959, the Pikalevo refinery, an integrated production facility processing nepheline concentrates was commissioned; in 1964, the Pavlodar aluminium smelter in Kazakhstan was put into operation; in 1970, the first batch of products was released by the Achinsk alumina refinery. The 1960s and 1970s saw construction of the Irkutsk, Krasnoyarsk and Bratsk smelters which were sited close to large hydro-electric power plants to make use of these cheap energy sources. Over the same period, the Krasnoyarsk metal works, the Pavlodar aluminium smelter and the Dmitrov pilot facility for production of aluminium tape were also commissioned. Due to the poor domestic raw materials supply unable to meet the rapidly increasing demand for aluminium, Russian metal producers were forced to procure alumina from overseas: Guinea, India and other countries. The Nikolaev alumina refinery in Ukraine became the first production facility in the industry designed to use high-quality imported materials. The Nikolaev alumina refinery was built in 1980 and initially refined African bauxite.




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30-06-2010 22:38:46

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