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Nalco, MIDHANI plan to set up lithium-aluminium alloy plant

Updated: July 14, 2016 12:28 pm

State-owned aluminium maker National Aluminium Company (Nalco) and the Defence Ministry’s Mishra Dhatu Nigam Ltd (MIDHANI) are in talks to set up an aluminium-lithium alloy plant. Lithium is the hottest metal today, with its demand underlined by the Space X and Tesla ventures of maverick entrepreneur Elon Musk. Lithium-aluminium alloys meet the extremely strong but very light properties required for spacecraft and high performance Tesla batteries. The tanks of freezing liquid hydrogen and liquid oxygen attached to NASA’s space shuttles are made of such alloys. “Lithium-aluminium alloy is an extremely expensive alloy (sells for around Rs 40 lakh a tonne),” said Nalco Chairman Tapan Kumar Chand . “More importantly, it is critical to our strategic sectors. Given the ‘Make in India’ push in the defence sector and the plans of an energised ISRO, we see a good domestic market for this product.”

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