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Alcoa to curtail Texas powder metal operations

Keywords: Tags  Alcoa, Rockdale plant, Texas plant, curtailment, atomizer, aluminum powder, smelter, Pocos de Caldas Brazil plant

CHICAGO — Alcoa Inc. plans to curtail its Rockdale, Texas, aluminum powder operations as it looks to cut costs in its primary products business.

That process is expected to be completed by the end of February, a spokeswoman for the Pittsburgh-based aluminum producer told AMM via e-mail Dec. 18. The facility currently employs 37 people, she added.

"We made this decision to continue strengthening the competitiveness of our upstream business," the spokeswoman said.

Alcoa recently completed a "review process" of the Rockdale atomizer that included a possible divestiture but didn’t result in a sale, the spokeswoman said.

Alcoa is working with customers and suppliers "to ensure a smooth transition," she said, noting that aluminum powder operations in Poços de Caldas, Brazil, aren’t impacted.

The Poços de Caldas plant makes powdered aluminum for the refractory, metalworking and chemical industries in Brazil as well as for export to other South American countries, Japan, Europe and the United States, according to Alcoa’s website.

Alcoa in 2012 agreed to sell assets at Rockdale, but said it would retain the atomizer and smelter at the site (, Aug. 16, 2012).

Operations at the Rockdale smelter have already been curtailed, according to Alcoa’s website.

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