Playing a crucial role in future research and development (R&D) of a revolutionary aluminum smelting technology, Apple has committed investment in a joint venture that resonates the iPhone-maker’s take on environment-friendly technology innovations. Also Read - Apple Store Online goes live from today, offers trade-in programme for iPhones and custom Macs
The joint venture could change global manufacturing. Aluminum is a key material in many of Apple’s most popular products and for more than 130 years, it’s been produced the same way. But that’s about to change, the company said in a blog post late on Thursday. Also Read - Apple iOS 14.2 public beta now available for supported iPhones and iPads
Aluminum giants Alcoa Corporation and Rio Tinto Aluminum announced the venture called “Elysis” to commercialise patented technology that eliminates direct greenhouse gas emissions from the traditional smelting process — a key step in aluminum production. Also Read - Apple iPhone 12 Mini could be the smallest phone in new iPhone 12 series
Apple has partnered with both aluminum companies and the governments of Canada and Quebec, to collectively invest a combined $144 million to future R&D.
“Apple is committed to advancing technologies that are good for the planet and help protect it for generations to come,” company CEO Tim Cook said.
“We are proud to be part of this ambitious new project, and look forward to one day being able to use aluminium produced without direct greenhouse gas emissions in the manufacturing of our products,” he added.
Aluminium smelting process involves applying a strong electrical current to alumina, which removes oxygen. Companies use a carbon material that burns during the process, producing greenhouse gases.
Alcoa Corporation designed a new process that replaces that carbon with an advanced conductive material and instead of carbon dioxide, it releases oxygen.
“Elysis” would work to further develop this technology for larger scale production and commercialisation, with a package planned for sale beginning in 2024.
The company would continue to provide technical support as well, Apple said.