This status enables Rusal to participate in state R&D co-financing programmes.

Rusal will now apply to the Skolkovo Innovation Committee for RUR750M ($26.4M) co-financing for the development and industrial introduction of inert anode. The company is also going to apply for co-financing of the RA-500 (520kA) Smelting Technology research project and Red Mud Recycling research project jointly with the National University of Science and Technology (MISIS).

It said the introduction of the inert anodes on an industrial scale could lower aluminium production costs by 15%. It will also enable to fully abandon the use of carbon in aluminium production, reducing the environmental impact

The cooperation with Skolkovo will result in the introduction of new environmentally friendly and efficient aluminium production technologies and will boost the development of Russian non-ferrous metallurgy as well as the country’s scientific potential.

Viktor Mann, Rusal's Head of Technology and Technical Development said: “The Skolkovo Fund gives its participants the opportunity to use its resources, helps to select partners and contributes in introduction of the most prominent ideas.

"The inert anode technology could be a real revolution in the global aluminium industry. We are very pleased to notice that Skolkovo appreciates the prospects of this technology introduction in Russia. It will become another acknowledgement of our country’s leadership in this industry.”