Elkeme, Hellenic Research Centre for Metals S.A. was founded in 1999 to support the Greek metallurgical industry. Through its state of the art laboratories, it focuses on industrial research and technological development. The majority of its efforts are concentrated in four major metals sectors (aluminium, copper, steel and zinc) in order to provide efficient solutions to its customers. Elkeme activities mainly focus on applied technological research towards:
- The development of new, innovative and high added value products and the improvement of existing products.
- The optimization of industrial processes, to support energy and cost efficient operations prioritising health and safety and the environment.
- Continuous research into plant environmental performance and impact assessment, recycling, stabilization and utilization of by-products for companies’ sustainable growth.
Elkeme’s key objective is the provision of high added value R&D services and technical solutions applicable to products, business and plant production processes, through:
- The employment of highly capable scientists, engineers and technicians.
- Investment in human assets via continuous professional development and education.
- Adoption of a flexible “customer-focus” business model.
- High quality and cutting-edge laboratories.
- Conducting research projects in metallurgy, materials science and environmental engineering for product and process development and optimisation.
- Forging strong relationships with customers, employees and partners, together with national and international research and/or academic organizations building a “knowledge”, “competence” and “excellence network”.
Elkeme laboratories focus on excellence and are recognized and distinguished worldwide through:
- Successful collaboration with outside consulting and technical partners/organizations on joint research projects and
- Participating in international contests, such as proficiency testing and inter-laboratory measurement schemes (Analytical chemistry lab).
Elkeme team members participate in international scientific/engineering associations and serve as members of worldwide scientific committees and boards, such as the Hellenic Metallurgical Society (member of Federation of the European Materials Societies, FEMS), and international/European bodies such as ASM International and European Microbeam Analysis Society (EMAS), Waste-to-Energy Research and Technology Council (WTERT) and Technical Working Group (TWG) of European IPPC Bureau for Non-Ferrous Metals. They also regularly contribute to scientific journals and conferences and are invited to offer lectures at Universities and in technical meetings and seminars. Elkeme is also a member of Hellaslab (member of Eurolab).
Elkeme cooperates regularly with national and foreign Universities on the implementation of practical training internships and the extrapolation of Diploma, Master and PhD theses based on industrial projects with significant technical and economic impact. It also participates in national and EU-funded research projects in collaboration with Viohalco industries, renowned research centres and universities.
The main departments/laboratories are the following:
- Process Metallurgy
- Physical Metallurgy and Forming
- Metallography and Electron Microscopy
- Environmental and Corrosion
- Mechanical Testing and Manufacturing Technology
- Surface Science and Coatings
- Analytical Chemistry
- Numerical Modeling
Special focus is given in the following fields:
- Alloy and process development and optimization
- Industrial trials with scientific monitoring
- Simulation of pyrometallurgical, thermal, casting and forming processes for process optimization
- Joining and welding
- Microstructure characterization
- Failure analysis and fracture mechanics
- Development and optimisation of surfaces and coatings
- Characterization and study of sandwich composite materials
- Chemical, mineralogical and texture analysis
- Environmental and waste management /recycling
- Systems and methods for optimised energy management
- Steel, aluminium, copper, brass and zinc metallurgy
- Corrosion protection
- Mechanical properties evaluation
- International & national R&D projects
Elkeme is also supported by the technology centres of the Viohalco companies which closely monitor new market trends in order to meet customers’ expectations and fulfil their requirements.
As a continuously evolving competence and excellence centre, Elkeme management applies robust and modern Quality Management Systems (ISO 9001:2008 and ISO/IEC 17025:2005) and invests in human capital, forming strong and long term professional relationships and promoting lifelong education and training. Elkeme team members are motivated to improve their knowledge, scientific status and skillsets, and encouraged to participate in various post-graduate programs designed in cooperation and alignment with industrial companies and their needs.