Aluminium is one of the most environmentally friendly metals in terms of how it is produced and applied. It can be easily recycled and contributes heavily to global environmental safety, as it is part of energy efficient transport and eco-friendly buildings. find out more

Inert anode technology

The use of inert anodes in the aluminium smelting process is a groundbreaking technology, capable of revolutionizing the global industry. Once introduced, it will enable RUSAL to completely eliminate any hazardous emissions.

The classical Soederberg reduction process requires half a tonne of coal anodes per one tonne of aluminium. The coal anodes are responsible for releasing carbon dioxide along with tar and polyaromatic emissions into the atmosphere. Besides, the coal anodes burn down and need to be replaced every three weeks, which is expensive and labour consuming.

The inert anode paste contains no carbon. The only byproduct of the inert anode smelting pot will be pure oxygen. A single reduction cell will be able to generate the same amount of oxygen as 70 hectares of forest. Besides, the inert anode does not burn down and therefore does not need to be replaced, which means a considerable cut in operational costs.

The technology major advantages:

  • Complete elimination of greenhouse gas and polyaromatic hydrocarbon emissions
  • Over a 10% cut in operational costs through reducing anode and energy consumption
  • Over a 30% cut in Greenfield projects expenditure costs

Project Status

НAs of today, RUSAL already has a material for inert anode that allows for a cut in operational costs as compared to the coal anode technology. The company is now working to improve the material as well as to retrofit the cells structure so that it would suit the new technology.

The development of the inert anode technology is now underway in Krasnoyarsk with the relevant tests being conducted at RUSAL’s Krasnoyarsk smelter.

RUSAL plans to begin the pilot tests of the new technology in the next two years. The first inert anode cells are expected to come onstream as early as in 2015.