Rechargeable lithium battery cost reduction -Lithium - Ion Battery Equipment

Rechargeable lithium battery cost reduction -Lithium - Ion Battery Equipment

Today, the burgeoning electric vehicle market is driving the lithium-ion battery market as it faces an unprecedented rise in demand.

The top price of lithium, which is necessary to produce lithium-ion batteries, tripled from $5,000 a ton to $15,000 a ton as market players competed for more mineral resources and markets. The cost of lithium materials currently accounts for about 10% of the production cost of lithium-ion batteries, said David Snydacker, chief executive of LilacSolutions, a lithium extraction start-up.

According to the data, global battery manufacturing capacity will double in 2021 to more than 278 gigawatt hours per year. Global demand for lithium is expected to quadruple by 2025, according to consultancy Avicenne Energy. The market demand for electric vehicles has surpassed that of consumer electronics, becoming the largest user of lithium-ion batteries.(Lithium - Ion Battery Equipment)

Clearly, the battery industry wants more lithium, and its material comes from spodumene or brine pools. While there are currently large reserves of lithium material, it would take six to 10 years to build a new mine, while a lithium-ion battery plant could be up and running within two years.

"Historically, the lithium materials market has been a small-scale specialty chemical market without much attention or innovation," Snydacker said. "But the lithium-ion battery industry is changing rapidly as suppliers struggle to keep pace with the rapid rise in electric vehicles."

Lilac Solutions of Oakland, Calif., wants to halve the cost of the lithium material used in electric vehicle batteries, hoping to supply battery-grade lithium hydroxide at a cost of less than $3,000 a ton.

Snydacker, the company's chief executive, said that the electric vehicle market has driven the scale of the lithium-ion battery industry, and most of the profits from manufacturing lithium-ion batteries have been squeezed out, and people are starting to face rising material costs. According to the survey, the cost of raw materials accounts for 50% to 70% of the cost of lithium-ion batteries.

"Lithium-ion costs could drop to $80 per kilowatt-hour, but beyond that, people are looking at lithium and other raw materials," Snydacker said.

The lithium mining industry is a volatile industry right now

Brine pools and spodumene deposits in deserts are both sources of lithium material. The highest quality lithium salt water pool is located in Chile's Atacama Desert, where the solar power industry also has the best solar energy resources in the world. Today, most spodumene comes from Australia, followed by my country.

In the 1990s, the U.S. hard rock lithium industry lost its market dominance. But higher prices are fueling a recovery in mining in North Carolina, Utah, California and Arkansas. According to data surveyed by, one mine in Nevada alone produced 2 percent of the material used in lithium-ion batteries worldwide in 2017.

in the production forecast for the industry. Morgan Stanley expects a glut of lithium material by 2021, with prices falling by 45%. The mining companies involved disagreed with Morgan Stanley, citing the complexity of dealing with bottlenecks and lithium mining.

Roskill expects the market for battery-grade lithium materials to remain tight. Canaccord Genuity expects new supply to enter the market, while warning concerns about the gap between forecast and reality of lithium material supply. WoodMackenzie sees brine pools as an important source of lithium material.

Routine extraction of lithium from brine resources is based on evaporation ponds, which are expensive to build, slow to start and difficult to manage, Snydacker said. He added that 99.9% of brine is made up of water and other lower salts (importantly sodium). Its processing requires a lot of water and chemicals to extract.

"All other impurities must be removed before only the lithium chloride solution remains," he said. FMC Corporation and others have developed lithium extraction technologies based on proton membranes and alumina absorbers. Canada-based MGX Minerals has been testing specialized membranes for screening lithium from wastewater.

Emma Foehringer Merchant of GTM notes that lithium extraction from brine ponds uses as much as 500,000 gallons of water per ton, often in arid deserts. "Lithium-based batteries also require raw materials such as cobalt, nickel and graphite, which further complicates the supply chain," she noted.



Contact Us

24 hours online service