Industrial & Office

Alcoa Tennessee Operation Pusher Furnace Expansion




Alcoa Aluminum Corporation Tennessee Operations installed two Ebner HICON Pusher Furnaces to bolster aluminum production at the Alcoa, Tennessee plant.   The pusher furnaces weighed in excess of 2.6 million pounds each and are the largest pusher furnaces in operation in the world (at the time of installation). The installation of the furnaces required the following considerations:

  • The excavations for the furnaces were performed inside an active production facility, so temporary shoring was required for the 30 feet excavations.
  • Due to furnace weight, micropiles bearing on the underlying bedrock were required for support.
  • Buffering of the clay residual soils due to shrinkage concerns due to furnace heating.
  • Continuous concrete temperature monitoring of mass foundation pours due to the potential for thermal cracking.

The total project cost approached $100-million.



GEOServices Services:

GEOServices was responsible for geotechnical recommendations as well as CQA testing for the temporary shoring, micro pile installation, pile cap installation, and excavation backfill.  GEOServices conducted all materials testing services including soils testing (field and laboratory), concrete testing (field and laboratory), foundation observations, pile inspection services, and reinforcing steel inspections.  Special concrete temperature monitoring was also conducted by GEOServices due to internal heat concerns related to the mass concrete pours and the high temperatures present in the furnace area where production operations continued.