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The SQ Group has introduced a new core raw material for the production of electrolytic aluminum, which is expected to drive a 2 million ton increase in the market size of phenolic resin.

2021-10-12 Share:

The "2021 China International Aluminum Week," hosted by the China Nonferrous Metals Industry Association, commenced in Taiyuan, Shanxi Province on October 12th. During the Aluminum Auxiliary Materials Market Seminar held within Aluminum Week, SQ Group (605589.SH) unveiled its groundbreaking research findings in non-ferrous metal smelting phenolic resin carbon anode. This innovation holds immense potential for driving green initiatives, energy conservation, and carbon reduction within the carbon anode and electrolytic aluminum industry. Several aluminum plants have already conducted trials utilizing this breakthrough technology, with expectations of a 2 million ton increase in the domestic phenolic resin market size.

 

 

 

In the context of achieving the "carbon peak and neutrality" target, there is significant concern regarding high carbon emission industries such as non-ferrous metals. In April this year, China's relevant departments introduced the Implementation Plan of Peak Carbon Dioxide Emissions in the Non-Ferrous Metals Industry. This plan proposes that by 2025, the non-ferrous metals industry should strive to achieve peak carbon dioxide emissions and aim for a 40% reduction in carbon emissions by 2040. According to statistics from China Nonferrous Metals Industry Association, in 2020, China's non-ferrous metals industry emitted 660 million tons of carbon dioxide, accounting for 4.7% of the country's total emissions. Among these emissions, the aluminum industry alone contributed to 550 million tons of carbon dioxide or approximately 83.3% of all non-ferrous metal emissions. The pressure on reducing carbon emissions within the aluminum industry is immense and requires collaboration throughout its entire supply chain. The technological breakthrough achieved by SQ Group has a profound impact on energy conservation and carbon reduction within the electrolytic aluminum industry chain.

 

The traditional production process of carbon anode in electrolytic aluminum production utilizes petroleum coke as the aggregate and coal pitch as the binding agent. However, SQ Group, a leading domestic synthetic resin enterprise and a national manufacturing single champion demonstration enterprise in the field of phenolic resin, has independently innovated and developed a conductive phenolic resin that can completely replace traditional coal pitch as a binding agent for producing phenolic resin carbon anodes after 5 years of dedicated research. SQ Group has applied for 9 patents related to this product individually or jointly, out of which 6 have already been granted.

The production process of carbon anode is significantly optimized following the substitution of coal pitch with phenolic resin. Firstly, there is no particle segregation during the ramming molding process, enabling effective utilization of shot coke and anode scrap while ensuring homogeneous and stable products with dense edges. Secondly, the resin anode remains unaffected by softening or volatilization of high-viscosity materials when heated, eliminating the need for metallurgical coke filling and post-roasting cleanup. Consequently, the roasting time has been reduced from over 20 days in traditional processes to just 8 days, resulting in a remarkable enhancement in production efficiency and cost reduction.

The utilization of phenolic resin carbon anode effectively facilitates energy conservation and carbon reduction throughout the electrolytic aluminum industry chain. During the production process, the molding stage eliminates the use of heat-conducting oil, resulting in shorter roasting time and significant reduction in natural gas consumption. This leads to a carbon emission reduction of approximately 50 kg per ton of phenolic resin carbon anode produced. If this mode is fully adopted in China, it could potentially reduce carbon emissions by about 1 million tons. Additionally, the lifespan of phenolic resin carbon anodes is extended during aluminum electrolysis, thereby reducing carbon consumption by around 35 kg per ton of aluminum produced. Achieving complete replacement nationwide would save up to 1.29 million tons of carbon. Moreover, due to its low resistivity and high bulk density properties, phenolic resin carbon anodes can reduce electricity consumption by 200 kWh per ton of aluminum produced, potentially saving as much as 7 billion kWh if fully implemented across China.