Dubai Aluminium DUBAL won top honours in the “Best Brownfield Technology” category of the 2012 American Metal Market AMM Awards for Aluminium Excellence, presented at AMM’s second annual Aluminium Summit , held in New York, USA. DUBAL won the award for a systems modernization powered by GE technology.
The 2012 Awards for Aluminium Excellence programme recognizes the most innovative companies in the field across multiple categories, and winners are selected by a judging panel comprising leaders of many of the top businesses in the aluminium industry. The project recognized at this year’s awards began in 2007, when GE and DUBAL launched a major energy- and cost-savings initiative.
“We are pleased to win the ‘Aluminium Smelter Excellence’ award,” said Abdulla Kalban, President and CEO: DUBAL. “The award is a further testament to DUBAL’s ongoing efforts at improving the efficiency and reliability of our power supply, which is key to aluminium production. As a champion of Dubai’s economic diversification, we have been working closely with our trusted partner GE, the leading provider of advanced energy technology worldwide, to successfully reduce our cost of generating electricity, which will support our competitiveness in the global market.”
“We congratulate DUBAL on winning this global award,” said Joseph Anis, President and CEO, GE Energy for the Middle East. “The award recognizes DUBAL’s unwavering mission to drive economic diversification in the country. It also celebrates our successful relationship with DUBAL and our continued commitment to deliver tailored technology solutions to support the country with its development, and to meet the demands of growing industrial applications, such as the aluminium industry.”
DUBAL owns and operates one of the world's largest single-site aluminium smelters: its smelter complex in Jebel Ali produces more than one million metric tonnes of quality, hot metal aluminium each year. Further, with an on-site generating capacity exceeding 2,500 MW, it supplies all of its own electric power. The electricity needed to power these operations is a substantial expense – fully one-third of the cost of aluminium production. To maintain its quality standards and to continue growing while becoming more competitive around the globe, DUBAL needed way to significantly its reduce power costs.
To do so, DUBAL enlisted GE’s help to implement a complete overhaul of its power management and generation operations. The project featured the installation of GE’s XA-21 SCADA energy management system  and an update to its GE Frame 9B and 9E turbines . GE and DUBAL have realized the following results since the beginning of the collaboration:
Achieving a 22.69 per cent increase in output by upgrading five GE 9B gas turbines. This added 75 million W to existing capability, sufficient to power over 60,000 homes.
Realizing a -10.44 per cent improvement on heat rate, thus saving the company US$4 million in fuel cost savings annually.
Efficiently managing >2,300 MW, enough to power 1.8 million homes.
Reducing nitrogen oxide emissions from its gas turbines by 30 per cent.
Maintaining >99.98 per cent system availability.
Saving enough on its electricity expenses to recover its project costs within three years.