Study of Cu-Ni-Fe Alloys as Inert Anodes for Al Production in Low-Temperature KF-AlF3 Electrolyte

Abstract

Cu-Ni-Fe-based alloys are considered as promising O2-evolving anode materials for CO2-free Al production. In the present study, biphased (as-cast) and monophased (postcasting homogenized) Cu65Ni20Fe15, alloys, and monophased Ni65Fe25Cu10 alloy (in wt pct) are evaluated as O2-evolving anodes for Al production in potassium cryolite at 700 °C. The produced Al purity is 99.6 wt pct, and the erosion rate is estimated at 0.4 cm year−1 for both Cu65Ni20Fe15 anodes compared to 95.2 wt pct and 3.2 cm year−1 for the Ni65Fe25Cu10 anode. The compositions, and morphologies of the surface oxide layer and the metal fluoride layer present at the oxide/alloy interface are compared for the three anodes. The deleterious impact of electrolyte infiltration on the surface oxide building is highlighted.

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Acknowledgments

The authors thank the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) (Grant STPGP 494283-16), Prima Québec (Grant R13-13-001), Metal7, and Kingston Process Metallurgy for supporting this work.

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Correspondence to Lionel Roué.

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Manuscript submitted March 27 2019.

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Jucken, S., Tougas, B., Davis, B. et al. Study of Cu-Ni-Fe Alloys as Inert Anodes for Al Production in Low-Temperature KF-AlF3 Electrolyte. Metall Mater Trans B 50, 3103–3111 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11663-019-01695-w

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