Lithium iron phosphate battery is becoming the focus of the new energy vehicle
Lithium ion batteries are a very complex system consisting of different kinds of electrode materials, each with different performance characteristics. The cathode materials that have been commercialized include lithium iron phosphate, lithium cobalt acid, lithium manganese acid, nickel drill manganese ternary and nickel drill aluminum ternary materials.In the application of new energy vehicles, lithium iron phosphate battery (LifePo4)and ternary lithium battery are mostly used. So why is lithium iron phosphate only starting to boom now?
1.What is the downside of lithium iron phosphate battery?
The advantages and disadvantages of lithium iron phosphate battery and ternary lithium battery are obvious. First of all, the safety performance of lithium iron phosphate battery is higher, because the cathode material of lithium iron phosphate battery is lithium iron phosphate, lithium iron phosphate crystal will not cause structural collapse at high temperature.The high safety can be guaranteed in the case of fast charge, overcharge, so lithium iron phosphate battery is safer. Secondly, the lithium iron phosphate battery has a longer charging cycle life, performs better in durability, reliability, stability. And more importantly, it’s has lower cost.Compared with other electrode materials containing non-ferrous metals, lithium iron phosphate has abundant raw materials and lower price, which is suitable for large-scale applications. At the same time, it has high power, can be charged quickly and provide better power for the car, so it is also suitable for practical application.While ternary lithium battery has better low temperature endurance and higher energy density. With the same weight, ternary lithium battery has a longer driving range, making the vehicle lighter in weight. However, in terms of safety performance, ternary lithium battery is inferior to lithium iron phosphate battery, which has poor thermal stability, high requirements on battery management system, and easy to spontaneous combustion at high temperature.
2.Lithium iron phosphate battery is making a counter attack
As the energy density is higher, ternary lithium battery can meet the demand of high-mileage, and the China’s government has introduced the promotion subsidy policy for high energy density new energy vehicles, thus ternary lithium battery is more widely used in new energy vehicles compared with lithium iron phosphate battery.
/ The number of LifePo4 battery : surpassed /
In May 2021, the output of Lithium iron phosphate battery in China has surpassed that of ternary lithium battery: the output of lithium iron phosphate battery is 8.8GWh, accounting for 63.6% of the total output; Ternary lithium battery output was 5.0GWh, accounting for 36.2% of the total output. Until July, the output of lithium iron phosphate batteries has exceeded ternary lithium batteries for three consecutive months.
Also in July, lithium iron phosphate battery also exceeded ternary lithium battery in vehicle loading: a total of 5.8GWh of lithium iron phosphate battery loaded, up 235.5% year on year, up 13.4%; While ternary lithium battery loaded only 5.5GWh, although the year-on-year increase of 67.5%, but decreased by 8.2%. This is the first time that lithium iron phosphate battery lead ternary lithium battery in terms of vehicle loading.
/ The cost advantage prominent /
In recent years, the energy density of lithium iron phosphate battery has been improved, and its production process has been rapidly iterated, which can basically meet the needs of consumers. As the development of energy density of lithium battery gradually reaches the upper limit, the China’s national subsidies for high energy density new energy vehicles begin to reduce, and ternary lithium battery no longer has an overwhelming advantage in energy density, while the inevitable cost disadvantages are constantly amplified. In this case, lithium iron phosphate battery has obvious effect on reducing enterprise cost and improving profit, and at the same time, the safety is also guaranteed, so it begins to gain a strong position.
/ Many companies are investing more /
Due to the outstanding advantages of lithium iron phosphate battery at present, driven by cost, more and more enterprises begin to invest in lithium iron phosphate battery or research and development of related products.BYD has accumulated a unique set of advantages in lithium iron phosphate power batteries, with a suite of technologies ranging from cell production to motor vehicle design.THE ELEC reported that LG New Energy started developing lithium iron phosphate battery technology late last year. In January and February this year, Tesla CEO also publicly announced that he would replace the ternary lithium batteries in some electric cars with lithium iron phosphate batteries. In addition to Tesla, Apple, which plans to launch an electric car in 2024, also said it would use lithium iron phosphate battery for safety reason. And many new energy vehicle brands in China have also launched lithium iron phosphate models. Behind this, battery manufacturers are investing and developing in the lithium iron phosphate battery. Ev lithium energy has invested nearly 8 billion yuan in lithium iron phosphate battery for passenger cars so far this year. At the same time, whether the BLADE battery technology of BYD, CTP technology of CATL or JTM (Jelly Roll to Module) technology of Guoxuan High-tech, the energy density of lithium iron phosphate battery can be further improved or even surpass the conventional ternary lithium battery, bringing better user experience.
3.Future upgrading direction of lithium iron phosphate: Lithium iron manganese phosphate
Lithium iron manganese phosphate is a combination of lithium manganese phosphate and lithium iron phosphate. Compared with lithium manganese phosphate, lithium iron manganese phosphate has better electrical conductivity, higher energy density than lithium iron phosphate, and has the characteristics of safety and low cost. Therefore, it is considered to be an upgraded version of lithium iron phosphate technology, which overcomes the weakness of energy density of lithium iron phosphate battery, and its potential is highly thought of by experts.
In the past, lithium iron manganese phosphate was limited by its low conductivity and rate performance. Now, with the upgrading of technology, its conductivity has been improved to a certain extent. The industrialization and commercialization of lithium iron manganese phosphate may begin to accelerate.
4.The two technology routes may coexist for a long time
In fact, the difference between lithium iron phosphate battery and ternary lithium iron phosphate battery and lithium iron phosphate battery mainly lies in different cathode materials. How will the two develop in the future, and who will become the final mainstream? We don’t know, but it is widely believed that lithium iron phosphate battery and ternary lithium battery will coexist and complement each other for a long time to come. Ternary lithium battery will be widely used in high-end electric vehicles to meet the demand of high range; Lithium iron phosphate battery will be more used in the middle and high-end models below. It is also believed that due to the safety and continuous breakthroughs in the energy density technology of lithium iron phosphate batteries, lithium iron phosphate battery is expected to surpass ternary lithium battery and occupy a dominant position in the market in the next decade.