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Constellium, a century of international recognition for Valais know-how

Tuesday 29 November 2022

In the heart of the Valais Alps, aluminum specialist Constellium employs more than 700 people at its sites in Chippis, Sierre and Steg, and no less than 1,200 employees worldwide. | © Constellium

With over 110 years of experience in the canton of Valais, Constellium is now recognized as the world leader in semi-fabricated aluminum products.

Having existed for over a century, and thanks to its cutting-edge expertise in the aerospace, transport, automotive and packaging sectors, Constellium is a prime example of the industrial know-how of the Valais region.

Today, the company is collaborating with the University of Engineering (HEI) to accelerate its digital transformation and develop Industry 4.0 applications. Since 2018, the two Valais-based players have launched the Smart Process Lab, with the following objectives: transferring knowledge from the academic world to industry, putting digital concepts into practice in complex industrial processes, and finding innovative solutions.

This platform has also allowed Constellium to work with external regional and national partners such as Innosuisse, EPFL, IDIAP and ICARE, different institutions that have enabled the company to define action strategies which directly meet the needs of its customers and its business.

Sustainability and artificial intelligence at the heart of tomorrow's concerns

"For our company, there are two important aspects. First of all, the infinite recyclability of aluminum is very important when it comes to sustainability. Aluminum is an extraordinary product from that point of view. It is one of the few products - if not the only one - that gets better every time it is recycled," explains Raoul Rey, who is responsible for the manufacturability of aluminum extrusions at Constellium. "The second aspect of our sustainability policy relates to the efforts we make to reduce our carbon footprint. For example, as part of the Smart Process Lab, we have developed tools to optimize our electricity consumption. It is true that we are a very large consumer of electricity, something we want to improve. We are currently working on peak consumption. Thanks to artificial intelligence, we will be able to predict future consumption, to better distribute our energy needs."

By 2022, Constellium has become a complete supplier of rolled and extruded aluminum solutions for the global automotive market, providing aluminum for 1 in 4 vehicles produced in Europe and the United States. For example, the company recently announced that it is providing aluminum body sheet solutions for the Mercedes-Benz C-Class models, as well as for Maserati's latest Grecale SUV.

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