A proven technology allowing simultaneous measurements of four cryolitic bath properties1  in only 3 minutes

How it works

In practice, temperature measurements and bath sampling are performed separately and not necessarily at the same time. Moreover, bath samples have to be sent to the laboratory to go through a series of analyses, with results available about 24 hours later. Under those conditions, real‑time information is not possible because of the lack of synchronicity in terms of measurements and of delays in obtaining critical data.

The STARprobeTM has been developed specifically to provide all critical real‑time information necessary for optimal pot control in the potroom.

Key features

  • Improved pot control
  • Wireless data transfer
  • Reusable probes

Thanks to the results obtained through the STARprobeTM, measurements are perfectly synchronized, allowing for precise adjustment of parameters to run the pots very close to their optimal limits. Huge improvements have been achieved in Alcoa’s plants using a new automated pot control algorithm2, developed especially to take advantage of this new opportunity:

  • 0.5% current efficiency improvement
  • Savings in voltage (35 mV)
  • 5% savings in AlF3

An Integrated Real‑Time Measurement System

The STARprobeTM uses electronic components that comply with stringent potroom requirements (magnetic field, high ambient temperature, highly dusty environment). The system and its program interface are easy to use by all interveners from cell operators to engineers. Thanks to a wireless data management system, measurements are recorded and can be transferred to the computer server, making possible real‑time measurement and cell control.

[1]  Superheat, Temperature, Aluminium concentration, Ratio (excess AlF3)

[2]  Wang, X., Tarcy, G., Batista, E. and Wood, G. "Active pot control using Alcoa STARprobeTM" Light Metals, (2011), 491-496