Exploration #46 Magnesitwerk Aken. Magnesitwerk Aken was founded in 1934 for the production of refractory bricks. The raw material consisted of magnesite, an extremely refractory material that has the capacity to withstand up to very high temperatures (around 3000 °C). The bricks were made through the sintering of the magnesite through a large rotating oven and then cooked at high temperatures (up to about 1800 °C) in order to create the crystalline magnesium oxide (MgO). The bricks were then used to coat blast furnaces, converters for steelworks and other furnaces, or thanks to their heat storage properties, used as accumulation cores. 

From 1947 to 1990, the plant operated under the name of Volkseigener Betrieb (VEB) and belonged to VEB Bandstahlkombinat “Hermann Matern” Eisenhüttenstadt until its partial closure. In 1990, the magnesite plant went to EKO Stahl GmbH, now ArcelorMittal Eisenhüttenstadt GmbH. Today, RHI Didier-Werke AG, Aken plant, is active here on a section. In 2014, three of the plant’s chimneys were blown up and the entire eastern section has left unused and abandoned.

If you liked this factory, you can also have a look at these other explorations: the twin twist towers, the abandoned cement factory.