The slightly silvery metal aluminium obtained from bauxite is nowadays mostly known from beverage cans or food tubes. A special property of aluminium is its resistance to light and oxygen.
Why is aluminium recycled?
Aluminium can be reused almost indefinitely. After the first remelting, it is referred to as secondary aluminium. The recycling of aluminium requires only 5% of the energy required for production. This protects the environment from up to 9.87 kilograms of harmful CO2 emissions per kilogram of recycled aluminium. This makes aluminium recycling an extremely important environmental process.
In Germany, the secondary aluminium market already exceeds the primary market with over 250,000 tonnes. It should also be noted that bauxite is a finite resource and that more and more aluminium will have to be supplied from the recycling process in the future.
How is aluminium recycled?
After collection and separation, the aluminium products are mechanically cleaned and then melted. The still liquid aluminium is pressed from the melt into ingots and pressed out while still warm by means of rollers. The resulting aluminium rolls can then be processed into new products.
Facts & figures
More than 800m€ are spent each year on recycled aluminium.
Recycling an aluminum can saves the same energy it costs to listen to a song on your iPod.
Aluminium is the most valuable material in the recycling bag.