Home Sessions Technology Session: The Technology Question!

Technology Session: The Technology Question!

Topic: Technology is increasingly impacting the aluminium process. Is technology providing the answers that the aluminium industry needs? or is the industry being left behind by technology? The industry has everything from energy reduction and modulation solutions to the inert anode but are these enough or does the industry need new solutions on top of these?

Keynote speech: Professor Liu Fengqin, Professor and PhD program Leader at Beijing Science and Technology University

Speech is in English. Chinese (Mandarin) translation will be provided.

Panel Discussion:

  • What are the interesting developments in Norway, Russia, Quebec, the Middle East and China?
  • Is the Elysis inert anode the answer we have been waiting for?

Moderator: Les Edwards, Vice President Control and Technical Services, Rain Carbon Inc.


  • Najeeba Al Jabri, Vice President, Technical, Emirates Global Aluminium (EGA)
  • Pascal Lavoie, Director-Smelting Manufacturing Excellence, Alcoa
  • Olivier Martin, Chief Technology Officer, Rio Tinto Aluminium
  • Dr. Hans Erik Vatne, Senior Vice President, Chief Technology Officer, Norsk Hydro ASA


Questions can be voiced 24 hours prior to the broadcast of the live session. Delegates can also send their questions throughout the duration of the session. The moderator will be receiving the questions and including the relevant ones in the panel discussion. The audience can choose whether they require to remain anonymous or if they allow for their name to be mentioned. 

Discussion will be in English. Chinese (Mandarin) translation will be provided.

  • 00


  • 00


  • 00


  • 00




Nov 17 2021


1:30 pm - 3:00 pm

Local Time

  • Timezone: America/New_York
  • Date: Nov 17 2021
  • Time: 8:30 am - 10:00 am


  • Dr. Hans Erik Vatne
    Dr. Hans Erik Vatne
    Senior Vice President, Chief Technology Officer, Norsk Hydro ASA

    Hans Erik Vatne is Senior Vice President, Chief Technology Officer at Norsk Hydro. He has 25 years of experience within the aluminium industry in Hydro, holding positions in R&D, production manager and plant manager in rolling, Head of Business Unit Remelters and lately Chief Technology Officer. He is also board member of the faculty of natural sciences at The Norwegian University of Science and Technology, and chairman of the portfolio board for energy, transport and low emissions of the Research Council of Norway. Hans Erik Vatne holds a master’s degree in Physics and a PhD in Metallurgy, both from The Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim, Norway.

  • Dr. Les Edwards
    Dr. Les Edwards
    Vice President - Control and Technical Services, Rain Carbon Inc.

    Les Edwards is Vice President of Production Control and Technical Services at Rain Carbon and has been with the company since 1998. He is responsible for production planning, technical support, research and development and laboratory operations. He is a regular presenter at industry conferences and has published more than 30 technical papers and received 5 best paper awards. He is leader of the TMS Anode Technology Course and has been a regular organizer and moderator of past Keynote sessions. He lives in Houston, Texas and prior to joining Rain Carbon, spent 11y years working in the aluminum industry in Australia. He has a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Western Australia and an MBA from Tulane University in New Orleans.

  • Dr. Pascal Lavoie
    Dr. Pascal Lavoie
    Director - Smelting Manufacturing Excellence, Alcoa

    Pascal Lavoie holds a bachelor’s degree in Materials and Metallurgical Engineering from Université Laval, Québec and a PhD in Chemicals and Materials Engineering from the University of Auckland.
    Pascal Lavoie’s career is connected with light metals production from the very beginning, starting at Noranda’s Magnola magnesium smelter as Process Engineer. When Magnola was curtailed, he moved to Noranda New Madrid smelter as Metallurgical Process Engineer and obtained a Six Sigma black belt certification.
    In 2006, Pascal joined the Light Metals Research Centre of the University of Auckland (LMRC) as Manager – International projects and then Chief Engineer where he led teams conducting more than 40 industrially-based R&D projects.
    Returning to Canada as consultant in 2012, he provided support to smelting operations, engineering of reduction technologies, control and production systems.
    Pascal joined Alcoa in 2018, where he now leads technical support for all aspects of aluminum smelting across Alcoa’s global manufacturing footprint.

  • Najeeba Al Jabri
    Najeeba Al Jabri
    Vice President, Technical, Emirates Global Aluminium (EGA)
  • Olivier Martin
    Olivier Martin
    Chief Technology Officer, Rio Tinto Aluminium

    Olivier Martin is Chief Technology Officer for Rio Tinto Aluminium. He holds a Master’s degree from the National Chemical Engineering Institute in Paris.
    In the course of an international career spanning thirty three years Olivier Martin has contributed to the development of the primary smelting process as well as to improving its operation, with long term assignments in France, Greece and Mozambique and countless short term assignments all over the globe.
    During his 12 years in smelter operations, he mainly contributed to the development and implementation of operational best practices and cost reduction initiative. He was also engaged in smelter commissioning and start up, thereby helping to put into operation smelting technologies in whose design he himself had played an important part.
    However, it is in the R&D field that Olivier Martin spent most of his career and made his most significant contribution. His initial field of expertise was the numerical simulation of magnetohydrodynamic phenomena, through which he developed numerous innovative busbar systems and played a major part in the design of Rio Tinto’s latest cell technology, the AP60. Over time he has broadened the scope of his activity to cover overall cell design and process control up to the point of coordinating the work of the various specialists today engaged in the design of the latest reduction cell.
    He is now the Senior Technology expert for Rio Tinto Aluminium (RioExpert) as Chief Technology Officer.
    He has also authored numerous papers for TMS and Australasian conferences and holds more than 10 patents. He has received in 2018 the prestigious “Light Metal Division Technology Award” from The Minerals, Metals & Materials Society (TMS).

  • Professor Liu Fengqin
    Professor Liu Fengqin
    Professor and PhD program Leader at Beijing Science and Technology University

    Dr. Liu, works at University of Science and Technology Beijing at present, has 38 years’ experience on the development and improvement of aluminium and carbon, engaging in energy-saving and emission reduction technology and engineering application research of aluminium. Recent years, Dr Liu mainly engage in the resource utilization of solid waste and dangerous waste in aluminium industry.

QR Code