Article - 31/03/2023

Four Projects Receive Innovation Award

Student Innovation Awards were given at the Icelandic Aluminum cluster Innovation Summit 2023, which was held at the University of Reykjavík. The Innovation Summit is held annually to discuss the latest in research and development in the aluminum industry in Iceland. Topics covered by the awardees included research on aluminum batteries, sleep studies on shift workers and innovations in recycling aluminum and waste materials in the aluminum and silicon industry. The Innovation Summit is sponsored by the Aluminum Cluster, the University of Iceland, the University of Reykjavík, IceTec, Samál and the Federation of Icelandic Industries (SI).

At the event, students are traditionally awarded for projects that are innovative and related to purpose of the Aluminum Cluster in promoting new ideas and innovation. The cluster also maintains an idea portal where students can get ideas for projects and work on them with companies that are a parr of the Aluminum Cluster.

The Four Projects Awarded This Year

- Arnar Guðnason received recognition for his Master's project at the University of Iceland, entitled "Digital Transformation in the Aluminum Industry – from an Innovation Ecosystem perspective", where he studied how key working groups in the aluminum industry can influence the progress of innovation.

- Daníel Þór Gunnarsson, Master's student at the University of Reykjavík received recognition for his research project concerning the production of aluminum with high-quality anodes, which is one of the ways that are being considered to make the aluminum industry carbon neutral. The title of the project is "Optimization of operating parameters in high-quality anode pots for aluminum production".

- Hákon Valur Haraldsson, PhD student at the University of Reykjavík received recognition for his project "MHD simulation of arc flash in a silicon production process", but he is working on the design of a program to predict the behavior of arc flash in silicon production furnaces and use it to reduce the production's carbon footprint.

- Júlía Huang and Heiðar Snær Ásgeirsson, B.Sc. students at the University of Iceland were recognized for their project "Utilization of waste materials as a deoxidizer in silicon iron production", but their project focused on the development of pelletizing technology with an emphasis on reusing coal dust from Icelandic smelters, pot scrap and plastic waste, into a deoxidizer for the silicon metal industry.

The sponsors of the innovation awards are Alcoa Fjarðaál, DTE, Efla, Landsbankinn, Launafl, Mannvit, Norðurál and Rio Tinto in Iceland. The cluster‘s main goal is to strengthen the competitiveness of the sector and the value chain around the industry in Iceland.  The cluster is intended to channel ideas, needs, communication and innovation within the sector. Furthermore, the aluminum cluster is to be a forum where you can express ideas or projects and call for solutions.

Pictured: Guðbjörg Óskarsdóttir, Managing Director of IceTec [Tæknisetur], Gaukur Garðarsson, Managing Director of Rio Tinto's Maintenance division in Iceland, Hafsteinn Þór Pétursson at Mannvit, Karl Matthíasson, Founder and Managing Director of DTE, Júlía Huang, Daníel Þór Gunnarsson, Arnar Guðnason, Hákon Valur Haraldsson, Dagmar Ýr Stefánsdóttir, Information Director of Alcoa Fjarðaál, Pétur Blöndal, Manager of Samál, Finnur Marínó Flosason, expert at Norðurál and Dagur Ingi Ólafsson, Cluster Manager of Aluminum Cluster.