After pyrometallurgical smeltering followed by an electrolytic refining process, the copper is ready for further use in its purest form, as a so-called cathode. These cathodes, having a copper content of over 99.99 %, are first melted down in a carefully monitored process and then cast continuously as an endless bar.
Still glowing, this bar is then fed into the hot-rolling train where it is rolled into copper rod. This is followed by continuous pickling and surface conservation before the rod is rolled into coils weighing up to 10 t each. Sampling, packing and labelling complete the production process. This efficient, energy-optimised and environmentally friendly continuous casting process is constantly being perfected by Aurubis. Thorough benchmarking means that our four AURUBIS ROD plants are among the best and most efficient of their kind anywhere in the world.
Every coil manufactured undergoes intensive testing by an independent department. Integrated "in-line" procedures are constantly on the look-out for surface defects and magnetisable inclusions.
At the same time, all the relevant parameters of the production process are monitored with the help of computers, documented and used for the detailed assessment of the products' quality. Independently of this, two rod samples are taken from each coil, which are then used for destructive testing: properties such as electrical conductivity, surface, quality of the microstructure, tensile strength, chemical composition and recrystallisation behaviour are determined and compared with fixed target values. Only if the rod meets the defined criteria in every respect is it released for dispatch.
Our integrated QM system is certified in accordance with DIN ISO 9001 ff and is being further optimised all the time.