Construction on Tomago Aluminium began in 1981 and continued until first production in 1983. At the time of first production, it was the world’s first large-scale AP18 plant, with two potlines and an annual production capacity of about 240,000 tonnes.
In 1991 further expansion started. A third potline and additional facilities were added to the site and were operational by early 1993. The expansion increased annual output by 140,000 tonnes and created 150 new positions at the smelter. The flow-on employment impact created an additional 750 jobs in the region.
Expansion continued with the extension of Potlines 1 and 2 which was completed in December 1998.
In 2001 Tomago Aluminium received Development Approval for the AP22 project, a $200million conversion to AP22 technology. The project involved the re-engineering of the pots to run at a greater capacity, taking the smelter’s output to 530,000 tonnes annually.
In 2009 development approval was granted to increase metal production to 575,000 tonnes per year. In 2015 approval was received to increase the smelter capacity to 585,000 tonnes of saleable metal through increasing amperage and improvements in pot technology.
The performance of the pot technology exceeded expectations and in 2016 the company was granted approval to increase capacity to 600,000 tonnes of saleable metal.