FAQs about Operating a Cu ER Tankhouse above 400 A/m² using the METTOP-BRX Technology

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Andreas Filzwieser, Iris Filzwieser, Stefan Wallner

Whenever thinking about increasing tankhouse performance two major aspects have to be considered,
the technological feasibility as well as the economic impact. For an optimized tankhouse performance,
not only in copper industry, but also for zinc electrolysis, the following points are of interest:
• High tankhouse capacity
• High current efficiency
• High chemical cathode quality
• Low operating cost
• Lower footprint
• Low bound capital
Increasing tankhouse capacity can generally be reached in two ways: Either by increasing the cathodic
deposition area (i.e., adding more cells or increasing the number of electrodes in the cell) or
by increasing the current density. The former possibility is relatively cost-intensive, as new buildings
and infrastructure are required, and sometimes it is not possible due to limited space and/or
other restrictions. Increasing the current density is generally a matter of the actual electrical system,
but it is also limited as current efficiency and cathode quality tend to decrease with increasing current
density, due to problems with both cathodic deposition and anodic dissolution. Consequently,
the current densities that are used in electrorefining are far below the theoretical limiting current
density.

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