Inert anode technology in the concept of green aluminum metallurgy

Cover Page

Cite item


An analysis is made of the traditional and advanced electrolytic technology for producing metallic aluminum from the point of view of environmental friendliness of production. A brief description is given of the use of Soderberg anode cells and pre-baked anodes combined by a common carbon anode material oxidized into gaseous oxide and carbon dioxide during aluminum reduction. In order to reduce (eliminate) the carbon footprint, the concept of an inert anode is proposed, the material of which does not enter into the aluminum reduction reaction, and therefore is not consumed (almost), while the release of oxygen in the status of the final gaseous “waste” is allowed. The basis for the development is an electrolytic cell with a self-baking Soderberg anode of the S-8BM type, which characterizes the oldest technology and has a large geography of representation in Russia. As a result of comparing the operating conditions and technological possibilities for obtaining anodes of similar sizes from composite and ceramic materials (cermets) when replacing the carbon anode array, it was decided to use the classic copper-nickel alloy CuNi44Mn1, which has a minimum iron content (reducing the grade of aluminum) and characterized by thermal stability at electrolysis temperature. Based on the electrical characteristics of the basic process and taking into account the recommendations of “RUSAL Laboratory” specialists, the dimensions of the metal inert anode are determined and recommendations are given for the reconstruction of the above-mentioned electrolyzer when switching to a new aluminum production technology.

About the authors

Yury A. Morozov

Bauman Moscow State Technical University (National Research University of Technology)

ORCID iD: 0000-0001-9229-7398

Cand. Sci. (Eng.), Associate Professor of the Department MT-13 “Materials Processing Technologies,”

5 2-ya Baumanskaya St, bldg 1, Moscow, 105005, Russian Federation

Vladimir S. Yalunin

Moscow Polytechnic University

Author for correspondence.
ORCID iD: 0000-0002-1994-7531

master’s student, Department “Metallurgy,”

38 Bolshaya Semenovskaya St, Moscow, 111250, Russian Federation


  1. Mincis MYa, Polyakov PV, Sirazutdinov GA. Aluminum electrometallurgy. Novosibirsk: Nauka Publ.; 2001. (In Russ.)
  2. Mincis MYa, Sirazutdinov GA, Galevskij GV. Electrolysers with Soderberg anode and possibilities of their modernization. Tsvetnye Metally. 2010;(12):49–52. (In Russ.)
  3. Begunov AI, Begunov AA. Modernization of electrolysis production with Soderberg anodes. Tsvetnye Metally. 2011;(7):45–49. (In Russ.)
  4. Vinogradov AM, Pinaev AA, Vinogradov DA, Puzin AV, Shadrin VG, Zorko NV, Somov VV. Improving the efficiency of sheltering soderberg electrolyzers. Izvestiya. Non-Ferrous Metallurgy. 2017;(1):19–30. (In Russ.)
  5. Buzunov V, Mann V, Chichuk E, Pitercev N, Cherskikh I, Frizorger V. Vertical stud Soderberg technology development by UC Rusal in 2004–2010 (Part 1). Light Metals. 2012:743–748.
  6. Frizorger V, Mann V, Chuchuk E, Buzunov V, Marakushina E, Pitercev N, Cherskikh I, Gildebrandt E. Vertical stud Soderberg technology development by UC Rusal in 2004–2010 (Part 2. EcoSoderberg Technology). Light Metals. 2012:749–753.
  7. Xianxi W. Aluminum electrolytic inert anode. Inert Anodes for Aluminum Electrolysis. 2021:23–120.
  8. Padamata SK, Yasinskiy AS, Polyakov PV. Progress of inert anodes in aluminium industry: review. Journal of Siberian Federal University. Chemistry. 2018;11(1):18–30. (In Russ.)
  9. Du J, Wang B, Liu Y, Yao GC, Fang Zh, Hu P. Study on the bubble behaviour and anodic overvoltage of NiFe2O4 ceramic based inert anode. Light Metals. 2015: 1193–1197.
  10. Weiping P, Ying L, Jie G, Ruilong Z, Jianhong Y, Wangxing L. Effect of La on the electrolysis performance of 46Cu-25Ni-19Fe-10Al metal anode. Light Metals. 2014: 1301–1304.
  11. Wang Z, Xue J, Feng L, Dai F. Investigating the corrosion behaviors of Fe-Ni-Cr anode material for aluminum electrolysis. Light Metals. 2014:1315–1319.
  12. He H. The metal phase selection of 10NiO-NiFe2O4-based cermet anodes for aluminum electrolysis. Light Metals. 2014:1321–1325.
  13. Liu J-Y, Li Zh-Y, Tao Y-Q, Zhang D, Zhou K-Ch. Phase evolution of 17(Cu-10Ni)-(NiFe2O4-10NiO) cerment inert anode during aluminium electrolysis. Transactions of Nonferrous Metals Society of China. 2011;21(3):566–572.
  14. Lu J, Xia Z. The corrosion performance of a binary Cu-Ni alloy used as an anode for aluminum electrolysis. Applied Mechanics and Materials. 2011;55–57:7–10.
  15. Glucina M, Hyland M. Laboratory scale testing of aluminium bronze as an inert anode for aluminium electrolysis. Light Metals. 2005:523–528.
  16. Saranchuk VI, Oshovskij VV, Lavrenko AT, Koshkarev YaM. Method for determining the magnitude of the electrical resistance of coal depending on temperature. Scientific Works of the Donetsk National Technical University. Series: Chemistry and Chemical Technology. Donetsk: Donetsk National Technical University; 2008. p. 138–143. (In Russ.)
  17. Uleva GA. Study of the physicochemical properties of special types of coke and its application for the smelting of high-silicon alloys (Abstract of the dissertation for the degree of Candidate of Technical Sciences). Ekaterinburg; 2013. (In Russ.)

Copyright (c) 2022 Morozov Y.A., Yalunin V.S.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

This website uses cookies

You consent to our cookies if you continue to use our website.

About Cookies