Iron Lithium Battery Receives Market Attention Again

The high cost of raw materials of ternary materials will also have a negative impact on the promotion of ternary lithium batteries. Cobalt is the most expensive metal in power batteries. After several cuts, the current average electrolytic cobalt per ton is about 280000 yuan. The raw materials of lithium iron phosphate battery are rich in phosphorus and iron, so the cost is easier to control. Therefore, although the ternary lithium battery can significantly improve the range of new energy vehicles, for safety and cost considerations, manufacturers have not put down the technical research and development of lithium iron phosphate battery.

Last year, Ningde era released CTP (cell to pack) technology. According to the data released by Ningde times, CTP can increase the volume utilization rate of battery pack by 15%-20%, reduce the number of battery pack parts by 40%, increase the production efficiency by 50%, and increase the energy density of battery pack by 10%-15%. For CTP, domestic enterprises such as BAIC new energy (EU5), Weilai automobile (ES6), Weima automobile and Nezha automobile have indicated that they will adopt the technology of Ningde era. VDL, the European bus maker, also said it would introduce it within the year.

Under the trend of declining subsidies for new energy vehicles, compared with the 3 yuan lithium battery system with a cost of about 0.8 yuan /wh, the current price of 0.65 yuan /wh for the lithium iron phosphate system is very advantageous, especially after the technical upgrade, the lithium iron phosphate battery can now also increase the vehicle mileage to about 400 km, so it has begun to attract the attention of many vehicle enterprises. The data shows that at the end of the subsidy transition period in July 2019, the installed capacity of lithium iron phosphate accounts for 48.8% from 21.2% in August to 48.8% in December.

Tesla, the industry leader who has been using lithium-ion batteries for many years, now has to lower its costs. According to the 2020 new energy vehicle subsidy scheme, non exchange tram models with more than 300000 yuan can not get subsidies. This prompted Tesla to consider accelerating the process of model 3 switching to lithium iron phosphate battery technology. Recently, Tesla CEO musk said that in his next “battery day” conference, he would focus on two points, one is high-performance battery technology, the other is cobalt free battery. As soon as the news came out, international cobalt prices fell.

It is also reported that Tesla and Ningde era are discussing the cooperation of low cobalt or non cobalt batteries, and lithium iron phosphate can meet the needs of the basic model 3. According to the Ministry of industry and information technology, the endurance mileage of the basic model 3 is about 450km, the energy density of the battery system is about 140-150wh / kg, and the total electric capacity is about 52kwh. At present, the power supply provided by Ningde era can make up to 80% in 15 minutes, and the energy density of battery pack with lightweight design can reach 155wh / kg, which is enough to meet the above requirements. Some analysts say that if Tesla uses lithium iron battery, the cost of single battery is expected to reduce 7000-9000 yuan. However, Tesla responded that cobalt free batteries do not necessarily mean lithium iron phosphate batteries.

In addition to the cost advantage, the energy density of lithium iron phosphate battery once reaching the technical ceiling has increased. At the end of March this year, BYD released its blade battery, which said its energy density was about 50% higher than the traditional iron battery at the same volume. In addition, compared with the traditional lithium iron phosphate battery pack, the cost of the blade battery pack is reduced by 20% – 30%.

The so-called blade battery is actually a technology to further improve the efficiency of battery pack integration by increasing the length of the cell and flattening the cell. Because the single cell is long and flat, it is named “blade”. It is understood that BYD’s new electric vehicle models will adopt the technology of “blade battery” this year and next.

Recently, the Ministry of finance, the Ministry of industry and information technology, the Ministry of science and technology, and the national development and Reform Commission jointly issued the notice on adjusting and improving the subsidy policy for new energy vehicles, which made it clear that the process of public transport and vehicle electrification in specific fields should be accelerated, and the safety and cost advantages of lithium iron phosphate are expected to be further developed. It can be predicted that with the gradual acceleration of the pace of electrification and the continuous improvement of related technologies of battery safety and energy density, the possibility of coexistence of lithium iron phosphate battery and ternary lithium battery will be greater in the future, rather than who will replace them.

It is also worth noting that the demand in 5g base station scenario will also make the demand of lithium iron phosphate battery rise sharply to 10gwh, and the installed capacity of lithium iron phosphate power battery in 2019 is 20.8gwh. It is expected that the market share of lithium iron phosphate will increase rapidly in 2020, benefiting from the cost reduction and competitiveness improvement brought by lithium iron battery.

Post time: May-20-2020
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