How Academia Changes What We Think About Shipping Containers

The new application possibilities of shipping containers have already managed to attract the attention of various communities including artists, designers and architects. Universities are also applying shipping containers in their research on engineering, arts and human sciences. Here we will present some examples.

Shanghai’s Tongji university’s students came up with an idea of a light-weight, solar-powered and self-sufficient house that could be built out of shipping containers. Their work, the Y container, is a structure that uses photovoltaic panels for heating floor and water. The six containers form wings that direct wind for natural ventilation. The Y container was built for a Chinese couple that could not afford independent housing. (via Inhabitat)

The students of Geneva University of Art and Design together with Bureau A built a container housing complex that helps to observe people’s living habits. The eight inhabitable shipping container pods all have different functions. For example one container is meant to study people’s engagement in communal decision making. (via BUREAU A)

As we can see through these examples, the academic communities worldwide contribute to finding new applications for shipping containers. New applications attract new stakeholders and create more demand.

 

The catch of this story is that no matter how many applications they come up with, the standardized shipping containers themselves will stay the same. They will also be provided by Shanghai Metal Corporation. You can visit our website to find more details about our shipping containers. Check also our social media platforms for future updates.

    

Tuomas P. // SMC Editor

Pictures and original articles: BUREAU A, Inhabitat

Eco Update: China

A not so widely known fact is that China almost consumes as much coal as the rest of the world combined, where it accounts for 80% of the countries source for energy. This is an alarming trend considering that the burning of this fossil fuel is one of the most polluting ways to generate electricity. In an economy where manufacturing and industry is on the rise this further adds to our concern.

Coal Mine

However, this may soon be about to change! Given the high levels of pollution in the country, particularly in industrial cities and around Beijing (where often daily particulate matter in the air can cause respiratory problems for even the healthy) people are sick of this issue and the government is listening.  A number of measures have been announced that should help to curb this trend; firstly the country has introduced bans on the building of new coal fired power plants and place limits on total energy consumption. These legislative measures will be complemented with an emissions trading scheme, due to be implemented by 2016, bringing the country up to speed with the developed economies of Europe and New Zealand.

There are signs that this move is working too, with coal imports at their lowest since 2012 despite prices being at their lowest since the peak of early 2011. This is complemented by banning of extremely low quality coal imports, particularly varieties containing high levels of sulfur and ash whose burning produces the highest levels of pollutants.

Air Pollution In Beijing

As a responsible and socially aware Metal supplying and manufacturing company based in China (with global offices) with heavy involvement in the metals and mining industries,Shanghai Metal Corporation (SMC) is proud to report on this news and welcomes developments in this area as it will undoubtedly lead to an increase in the quality of life of many everyday Chinese.

To find out more about our range of metal products or to discuss customization and individual requirements please visit our website Here. For more updates on this and other exciting developments follow us on FacebookTwitter & Linkedin. Or by using your smart device, scan the QR code below!

SMC QR

Dominick F.//SMC Editor

Adapted from: Frik Els. Images: National Geographic; Green Media;

Rolling Steel Coil to Make Sheets

The process of getting galvanized steel from its prepared form (coiled and wrapper up) is completed with the aid of a roller. This device allows the user to roll the galvanized sheets into any number of profiles depending on the intended purpose. The practice of rolling metals has been around since 1590, but really took off in approximately 1850.

 OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Of the most well know of these purposes if for the use in metal roofing. For this application corrugations are rolled into the galvanized steel to match the environment of the area. For example the most typical corrugation seen is the circular wavy corrugation which performs best when there is some degree of pitch to the roof, whilst a flatter and wider pan may be used when the roof has less of a degree of slant. This wider pan has more surface area to transport water off the roof.

 Coro 3

Corrugations for external use, such as the cladding of external and internal walls or ceilings may use what is referred to as a mini-orb (smaller corrugation) so as to provide a particular aesthetic, especially when emphasis is put on the internal. Furthermore galvanized steel coil can be pre painted to provide a particular color to meet the end users specification; this paint is baked on and provides an extra layer of protection from the elements.

<> on January 26, 2010 in Eisenhuttenstadt, Germany.

Shanghai Metal Corporation, being one of the world’s leading suppliers and manufacturers of metal products offers galvanized steel in a multitude of forms that can be used to satisfy the applications mentioned above. These include piping, galvanized steel coils, strips, sheets, plates, wire, pre-painted steel, roofing material (in a number of profiles) as well as steel grating. We also stock and supply coil rollers so you can do it yourself or have the sheets repainted and cut by us.

To find out more about these products or to discuss customization and individual requirements please visit our website Here. For more updates on this and other exciting developments follow us on FacebookTwitter & Linkedin. Or by using your smart device, scan the QR code below!

QR

Dominick F.//SMC Editor

Sources: Drexmet; Union Corrugating; Galvanizing Association of Australia; Wikipedia; Gulf Coast SteelVostelpine

#BuildingValueAcrossTheGlobe

Эксперты: Санкции повлияют на экономику РФ, но пострадают и страны ЕС.

Страны ЕС предварительно договорились об экономических санкциях в отношении России, сообщает агентство Рейтер со ссылкой на дипломатический источник. Как отмечается, новые санкции затронут нефтяную сферу, оборону, поставки продукции двойного назначения и технологии. При этом санкции могут быть пересмотрены уже через три месяца.

Ущерб, который понесут Россия и Евросоюз от введения санкций, примерно равен, отмечают в ЕС.

“Санкции против России окажут влияние на всю мировую экономику, но не сразу”, – сообщают также эксперты британской газеты The Financial Times. Причем гораздо сильнее они затронут страны Евросоюза, нежели США, цитируют оценку аналитиков РИА Новости.

Ущерб от введения третьего пакета санкций для России составит для каждой стороны около 100 миллиардов долларов за два года, подсчитали в Евросоюзе.

В наибольшей степени от срыва контрактов с Россией пострадают страны южной части Европы и в первую очередь – Италия, сообщает Euobserver.сom. По подсчетам Комитета по восточноевропейским экономическим отношениям, санкции могут привести к сокращению 350 тысяч рабочих мест в Германии, которые напрямую зависят от российско-немецкого товарооборота, а это 80 миллиардов евро в год.

Egor T.//SMC Editor

Reasons Why You Should Import From China

With the depression of steel prices on the global market, steel has become less expensive. In many cases, raw steel is imported from China and the local metal manufactures then complete the process and sell locally. Demand however, currently doesn’t match output, which creates a buyer’s market for steel. China, therefore is a highly attractive market, price is the major reason for the high import demands from China, but other reasons include:

Depressed prices. Again, Chinese steel manufacturers often have overproduced product in comparison to the global demand. This has caused a depression of steel prices for both foreign and domestic steel. With relaxed tariffs in the US, the cost of imported steel is still less than that of domestic manufacturers and steel mills.

Over ordering. Having a lot of raw material sitting around has the potential to work to your benefit. China’s steel industry has started to slow down their production, but the raw material has already been acquired and is costing manufacturer’s overhead costs just to keep it.

High-quality. China’s government has recently tightened up their regulations concerning steel mills, closing many that couldn’t maintain the minimum standards set. This has left the companies that are still in business taking a greater concern on the quality of their products and manufacturing methods.

Excellent customer service. With the slowing down of production, China’s steel manufacturers are fighting harder over a smaller market share and offering inducements to get your business. One of the primary inducements they can offer is excellent customer service and keeping current and potential customers happy and satisfied.

Price locks. Taking the worry out of a fluctuating market price helps raw steel importers control their bottom line. Instead of waiting for the price to creep down, inhibiting manufacturing while waiting for the price to bottom out, you can plan ahead for costs by ordering now, at the current rate, and having the steel shipped to your facility on your schedule.

Dependable shipping schedules. With the accumulation of raw materials, scheduling your order becomes easier. The Chinese companies already have the material for your order in stock and can begin work on it, immediately. This allows for planned ordering and shipping without having to worry about the global market availability.

Modernized facilities and an emphasis on increasing economic output have made China an attractive market. Cheap shipping and a ready supply of materials will keep Chinese steel flowing into global marketplaces.

 Jessica R // Editor SMC

Работа Уралвагонзавода и Caterpillar по созданию совместного предприятия не будет продолжена из-за санкций США

 

 

 

 

Работа Уралвагонзавода и Caterpillar по созданию совместного предприятия не будет продолжена из-за санкций США в отношении УВЗ, сообщает ИТАР-ТАСС.

“Проект пострадает, если санкции будут продолжены. Мы на холде (от англ. hold — «держать») стоим, потому что мы должны были его реализовать на прошлой неделе, но из-за того что ввели санкции, все в стопоре.” – Олег Сиенко, генеральный директор УВЗ.

Речь идет об очередном пакете документов по созданию совместного предприятия с Caterpillar, который планировали подписать еще на прошлой неделе. По словам Сиенко, в августе должны были «привезти два локомотива под сертификацию, их надо было сейчас начинать грузить — эта ситуация остановлена».

Сейчас УВЗ ждет от американских партнеров информацию, как они видят дальнейшую реализацию проекта и, скорее всего, получат ее в начале августа.

Напомним, США ввели дополнительные санкции против России из-за ситуации на Украине. В отношении УВЗ вместе с другими предприятиями российской оборонки ввели блокирующие санкции, которые предусматривают полное прекращение с ними каких-либо контактов со стороны США и замораживание их активов в американских банках.

Локомотивостроительное подразделение Caterpillar — Electro-Motive Diesel (EMD) и Уралвагонзавод в 2013 году подписали протокол о намерениях, касающийся разработки и производства магистральных локомотивов в РФ. Предполагалось, что СП создадут на базе Челябинского тракторного завода, входящего в УВЗ. Не менее половины всей продукции будет производиться в России: например, рамы, кабины и элементы управления для нового локомотива.

Egor T.//SMC Editor

Dispute Resolution Moves To Stabilize World Copper Prices via Indonesia

Indo CopperAccording to the London Metal Exchange on Monday 28th July 2014 world Copper prices appear to have stabilized despite rising global demand putting inflationary pressures on the price. This is a direct result of the American natural resource company Freeport-McMoRan who has an industry leading global portfolio in mineral assets, significant oil and gas resources and a growing production profile. Yesterday Freeport was able to settle a six month long tax dispute with the Indonesian government, allowing for the resumption of Copper exports from major Indonesian mines such as in the Grasberg mineral region in West Papua (containing approximately 35.6 billion pounds of Copper) to key global Copper consuming nations such as China and India. Freeport-McMoRan is expected to export approximately 756,000 tonnes of Copper in the second half of 2014.

Settlement of this on-going tax dispute has doused the predominately bullish global Copper market in cold water despite sturdy factory growth in both China and the Euro-zone strengthening the overall world demand for Copper ore throughout the month of July. Additionally, economic data from Beijing has confirmed that the Chinese economy has weathered the economically choppy first half of 2014 and is expected to return to calmer waters where economic growth and expansion can really regain traction. This emphasizes that the Copper industry is finally solidifying its expected movement away from a demand-basis and more toward supply-surplus, ultimately stabilizing the previous up-and-down nature of world Copper prices throughout the first half of 2014.

Indonesian_depositsFurthermore, the London Commodity Futures Trading Commission has highlighted that global Long-positions of Futures and Forward contracts on Copper have peaked at an eight year high and have begun their descent into a predominately short-positions as world Copper supply moves into surplus, relieving excess demand and putting deflationary pressures on Copper prices. This is particularly so on the back of the news of Indonesia re-initiating their exports to major international Copper consumers such as China via Freeport-McMoRan.

Shanghai Metal Corporation stocks a wide selection of Copper-related products and raw materials for all your construction or manufacturing needs. Please take the time to browse our online catalog at: http://www.shanghaimetal.com/Copper–tpl3.html.

Zenn B.//SMC Editor

Peru Set to Explode with Copper Extraction

Peru is re-positioning themselves to catapult in front of China to take back second place in the title race for the largest Copper extraction nation in the world. Second only to Chile who produce a whopping 5.8 million tonnes of Copper annually, Peru is set to ramp up their annual Copper output capabilities by approximately double from 1.4 million tonnes in 2013, to 2.8 million tonnes before the beginning of 2016.

The expected green lights on five core Peruvian Copper mining projects underpin this massive growth aspirations and development of the Copper industry in Peru. These projects include; the US$4.6 billion expansion venture of the Cerro Verde’s which is expected to finish up at the beginning of 2016, Southern Copper’s controversial US$1 billion expansion of the Tia Maria mine which had been on hold since 2011 due to community concern for the inadequately proposed water usage and pollution management strategies has resolved these issues through a revisal of environmental management strategies which are expected to gain local approval soon, the US$3.5 billion Toromocho mine which opened last December, US$900 million expansion of Toquepala mine,  and the Chinese owned and led US$5.86 billion Las Bambas mine which is expected to shift it’s Copper output upwards from 1.3 million tonnes in 2013 to 2.8 million tonnes before 2016.

Peru_cooper_mine_GlencoreSince China is the worlds leading consumer of Copper, Peru exports approximately one quarter of their total Copper extracted to China alone. However recent events such as slowing Chinese housing growth and the Qing Dao collateral scandal have encouraged a cooling of Copper demand in China, forcing a slump in global Copper prices. Provided these current events do not have lasting effects over the next eighteen months, Peruvian Copper production levels can be expected to continue to close the gap between the Copper extraction market leaders in Chile.

Shanghai Metal Corporation stocks a wide selection of Copper-related products and raw materials for all your construction or manufacturing needs. Please take the time to browse our online catalog at: http://www.shanghaimetal.com/Copper–tpl3.html.

Zenn B.//SMC Editor

Monopolistic Concerns for the Iron Ore Market

Iron ore is a major raw material used to create steel. Therefore, demand for this raw material by the steel industry plays a major role in determining prices. Internationally, iron ore prices are largely determined by the Chinese because they are the largest consumer of iron ore in the world. China accounts for more than 60% of the seaborne iron ore trade.

iron oreThe flagging demand for iron ore from China in the wake of an economic slowdown has put downward pressure on iron ore prices. According to data from China’s National Bureau of Statistics, growth in investment, factory output and retail sales has slowed to multi-year lows in the first two months of the year. A Chinese government crackdown on polluting steel plants has forced many of them to shut down. In addition, tightening of credit by Chinese banks to steel mills that are not performing well, will negatively impact these mills’ prospects. Furthermore, the Chinese leadership has proposed structural reforms of the economy, shifting the emphasis from investment and export driven growth to services and consumption led growth. Such a transformation of the Chinese economy may negatively impact Chinese demand for steel in the long term. Chinese steel demand growth is expected to slow to 3% and 2.7% in 2014 and 2015 respectively, from 6.1% in 2013. Weak demand for steel has indirectly resulted in weak demand for iron ore as well as metallurgical coal.

553194-iron-oreOn the supply side for iron ore, expansion in production by majors such as Rio Tinto and BHP Billiton has created an oversupply situation. A combination of weak demand and oversupply is likely to result in lower iron ore prices in the near term. Lower iron ore prices will impact smaller mining companies much more than the major mining companies. It appears that the price of iron ore is being manipulated in favour of larger producers. This is due to the smaller company’s higher cost of production of per ton, as compared Rio Tinto and BHP who have lower prices. Iron ore spot prices stood at $92.74 per dry metric ton (dmt) at the end of June 2014, about 19.2% lower than a year ago. The outlook on iron ore prices remains bleak in the near term, in view of the oversupply situation.

It’s not surprising that so many Chinese producers are being forced to close up shop. According to data supplied by Bloomberg, around 80% of China’s mines have operating costs of around $80 to $90 per ton. In comparison, BHP Billiton, and Rio Tinto produce ore at around $53, $68, and $44 per ton respectively.
But it is not just BHP ramping up supply — Rio Tinto and Vale are also ramping up output, compounding the supply problem.
BHP Billiton is increasing output by 260 million to 270 million tonnes from a 217 million tonne target in 2014, and Rio Tinto is on track to produce 295 million tonnes of ore this year, up from 266 million last year.

Further reading:

http://www.forbes.com/sites/greatspeculations/2014/07/21/cliffs-earnings-preview-lower-iron-ore-and-coal-prices-will-weigh-on-results/

http://www.fool.com/investing/general/2014/07/17/heres-why-the-price-of-iron-ore-has-been-falling.aspx

Jessica R // Editor SMC

HOW INNOVATION HAS INCREASED THE PRODUCTIVITY OF NATURAL RESOURCES

The earth’s natural resources are finite, which means that if we use them continuously, we will eventually exhaust them. This basic observation is undeniable. But, another way of looking at the issue is far more relevant to assessing people’s well-being.

Our exhaustible and unreproducible natural resources, if measured in terms of their prospective contribution to human welfare, can actually increase year after year, perhaps never coming anywhere near exhaustion. How can this be? The answer lies in the fact that the effective stocks of natural resources are continually expanded by the same technological developments that have fueled the extraordinary growth in living standards since the Industrial Revolution.

Here we go again with  Innovation advantages: we can state that it actually has increased the productivity of natural resources (e.g., increasing the gasoline mileage of cars). Innovation also increases the recycling of resources and reduces waste in their extraction and processing. And innovation affects the prospective output of natural resources (e.g., the coal still underneath the ground). If a scientific breakthrough in a given year increases the prospective output of the unused stocks of a resource by an amount greater than the reduction (via resources actually used up) in that year, then, in terms of human economic welfare, the stock of that resource will be larger at the end of the year than at the beginning. Of course, the remaining physical amount of the resource must continually decline, but it need never be exhausted completely, and its effective quantity can rise for the indefinite future. The exhaustion of a particular resource, though not impossible, is also not inevitable.

Ever since the Industrial Revolution, world demand for power and raw materials has grown at a fantastic rate. One respected observer estimates that humankind “has consumed more aluminum, copper, iron and steel, phosphate rock, diamonds, sulfur, coal, oil, natural gas, and even sand and gravel over the past century than over all earlier centuries put together,” and Tilton (2001) goes on to write that “the pace continues to accelerate, so that today the world annually produces and consumes nearly all mineral commodities at record rates”.

mela innovazione

Laura C./ SMC Editor