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Beyond materials

A range of prime quality aluminium made with a minimum of 75% recycled, post-consumer scrap.

Hydro CIRCAL is a prime-quality aluminium that is obtained by dismantling old windows, doors and facades that have reached the end of their lifecyle and remelting them for reuse again. This process makes it possible to reduce the removal of minerals from the earth, avoids the emissions of waste into the natural environment, reduces the energy consumption of the production process and limits the amount of CO2 emissions released into the atmosphere.

In short, Hydro CIRCAL is a much more environmentally friendly product that primary aluminium and one which contributes to the development of a circular economy through the reuse of materials.

How is Hydro Circal 75R made?

The production process of Hydro CIRCAL 75R is characterised by a rigorous selection of the material to be recycled in order to achieve a prime quality alloy for the manufacture of sustainable aluminium building systems.

Aluminium is a material that can be found in dozens of different alloys. Aluminium alloys are also usually found in combinations with other elements such as magnesium, manganese, copper, zinc, silicon, titanium and chromium depending on the use for which it was produced.

The Hydro plant in Dormagen, Germany has developed the technology to efficiently sort and separate aluminium from other metals and directs each one for the correct recycling process. This system allows aluminium with the right alloy to be sent to Hydro's melting plants.

Hydro, TECHNAL's supplier of recycled aluminium

The Norwegian Multinational company Norsk Hydro owns the TECHNAL Brand and supplies it with all the aluminium used to make windows, doors and facades. With more than 20,000 employees and production plants around the world, Hydro is the world's leading producer of aluminium. Aluminium from Hydro is used to make trains, cars, aeroplanes, computers, mobile phones and other everyday objects as well as building systems. With the launch of Hydro CIRCAL, Hydro brings the first certified post-consumer recycled aluminium to the market. 

Recycling aluminium and the circular economy

Unlike other materials, aluminium can be fully recycled without losing its physical properties or degrading in quality. It's estimated that there are 200,000,000 tons of aluminium used in products globally that can be 100% recyclable at the end of their lifecycle.

Hydro uses this recycling process to replace the extraction of bauxite (the mineral from which aluminium is obtained) with the remelting of post-consumer scrap aluminium. The objective is to reduce the exploitation of natural resources, although alumina is the third most abundant element on the planet. 

The other aim is to prevent disposing of objects that can be recycled and have an infinite life within the circular economy. This process is called urban mining and aims to turn cities into the main supply points for building materials.

What is Hydro CIRCAL 75?

Hydro CIRCAL is the world's first certified recycled aluminium with at least 75% of the prime-quality aluminium alloy comes from at post-consumer materials. 

The most substantial difference between Hydro CIRCAL and other alloys that contain recycled content is that Hydro CIRCAL creates a new life for windows, doors and facades that have already been used in buildings before, preventing them from being sent to landfill. 

Far from being the final result of post-consumer scrap content, 75% is for Hydro CIRCAL the minimum requirement of a continuous improvement process to progressively reach total recycling.

Recycling aluminium saves energy

The production of primary aluminium from the extraction of Bauxite requires a large amount of energy with current industrial processes. This translates into abundent CO2 emissions, the main greenhouse gas and a direct cause of climate change. 

By recycling post-consumer scrap aluminium, the remelting process saves up to 95% of this energy and provides a material of the same high quality as primary aluminium.

Using products with Hydro Circal 75R reduces the environmental impact

The consequence of using Hydro CIRCAL is the drastic reduction in CO2 emissions which sums more than 85% when compared with the global average for primary aluminium production. With its 2.3 kg of CO2 per kg of aluminium, Hydro CIRCAL is currently the aluminium alloy with the lowest CO2 emissions available on the market. It won't stop there. The goal is to reduce the footprint further and use an alloy containing 100% post-consumer recycled aluminium scrap.

Make a difference by choosing TECHNAL

 

What is the difference between choosing TECHNAL products extruded using Hydro CIRCAL aluminium and products made using primary aluminium from other sources?

The average carbon footprint of aluminium used in Europe is 8.6kg of CO2 for every kg of aluminium. With Hydro CIRCAL, this carbon footprint drops to 2.3kg of aluminium, so 6.3kg of CO2 is prevented from entering the atmosphere. 

A typical aluminium window uses around 20kg of aluminium, which generates an average saving of 126kg of CO2 emissions for each window system. 

WINDOWS

 

ALUMINIUM

 

CARBON FOOTPRINT

1 home= 5 windows
1 project = 50 homes
50 homes = 250 windows

 

1 window = 20 kg of aluminium (average)
250 windows = 5,000 kg of aluminium

 

5,000 kg of primary aluminium x 8.6kg CO2 = 43,000 kg of CO2 emissions

5.000 kg of Hydro CIRCAL 75R aluminium x 2.3kg of CO2 = 11,500kg CO2 emissions

Using TECHNAL windows made with Hydro CIRCAL 75R in this building represents a reduction of CO2 emissions by 31,500 kg.

This is equivalent to the emissions of 21 cars during an entire year.  

We believe that to be truly sustainable, we must look to a world beyond four walls and work to make it a reality – starting today. That´s why we go beyond simply world-class low-carbon materials, to run every part of our business as sustainably as possible. TECHNAL has a holistic approach to sustainability and act within 3 main areas:

to reduce the carbon emission
in the use phase

to reduce the upfront and
embodied emissions

to see the
bigger picture