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In 2009, the specialists at RUSAL's ETC created an advanced generation of Soderberg cells, effectively giving a new birth to the traditional method of aluminium production. The key advantage of the new technology is that, instead of traditional anode paste, the upgraded cells use an environmentally friendly mass. It contains much less pitch, which is the main source of tarry substance emissions. In addition, the improved cell design ensures its high impermeability, and alumina is fed automatically. On the whole, this has allowed significantly reducing the negative environmental impact.
RUSAL began switching its production facilities to Green Soderberg technology in 2016. Reduction cells which have been upgraded show an average 14% reduction in pollutant emissions, and fluoride – more than 32%. The industrial operation of upgraded cells has also shown that Green Soderberg technology is more efficient from an economic point of view. The positive result is achieved due to lower electricity consumption, higher current efficiency and capacity.
By 2025, RUSAL plans to switch 100% of the cells at the Krasnoyarsk, Novokuznetsk and Irkutsk Aluminium Smelters to Green Soderberg technology. At the Bratsk Aluminium Smelter, it will be implemented at 60% of the units.