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Rio Tinto external affairs director Simon King said it took eight years for the company to produce its first million tonnes by October 1979, but the smelter gradually got quicker — the next million took just under six years.
To mark the production of the 14th million tonne, New Zealand’s Aluminium Smelter (NZAS) gathered experienced casting and logistics team members — (from left) Dave Cloake, Dave Saunders, Alan Broomhill, Gary Buchanan and Brent McQuinn — who have 203 years’ experience between them at Tiwai.
Every 24 hours, 1.5 tonnes is produced from each cell of four production lines.
The Bluff-based smelter is one of the few smelters in the world to produce ultra-high-purity aluminium using renewable energy.