NMC, LFP, silicon, and solid electrolytes will enter both mainstream and niche markets
Advanced Li-ion battery technologies are being developed all the time, but only a few make it to the mass production stage. Every other week a hot start-up announces a breakthrough technology that will revolutionise the battery industry forever. IDTechEx brings clarity in the energy storage industry with a detailed analysis of advanced Li-ion batteries and other battery technologies.
The truth is that battery innovation takes place gradually and long validation cycles are needed before a new material can find its way into the mainstream market. Car companies are extremely cautious when adopting new battery technologies, as they do not want to set the whole industry on a collision course because of battery-related incidents. As an example, the adoption of high-nickel-content cathode materials like NMC622 and NMC811 has long been delayed, however according to recent announcements by LGChem and rumours about the new Nissan LEAF, NMC811 may enter the market as soon as 2018. On the other hand, the Chinese government has issued policy regulations that encourage battery companies in the country to switch from LFP cathodes to others that are more energy-dense, such as NMC and NCA, the one currently found in Tesla's electric cars.
Figure 1: different cathode production mix in 2018 and 2028
Based on conversations with industry leaders and IDTechEx's own expertise, this report analyses the Li-ion industry with a critical outlook into how it will evolve over the next ten years. The report also leverages on IDTechEx's unique overview of 45 different electric vehicle categories, which include land, water, and air vehicles. These categories are used as the starting point to outline what battery chemistry will be the dominating one in forklifts, AGVs, plug-in hybrids, buses, trucks, two-wheelers, ships, drones, and airplanes. Li-ion batteries and advanced Li-ion batteries are benchmarked and compared to other battery chemistries like lithium sulphur, lithium air, sodium ion, magnesium ion, zinc- carbon, supercapacitors, zinc air, and redox flow batteries. Additional markets like consumer electronics, wearables, and stationary storage are also presented and analysed with forecasts as to which battery chemistry will prevail or establish itself in a given niche.
The report is complemented with 12 full company profiles, as well as dozens of case studies from leading Li-ion manufacturers like LGChem and Tesla, or materials suppliers like 3M, Umicore, BASF, SGL, and Solvay. The advanced Li-ion industry is analysed in terms of cathode, anode, and electrolyte innovation, not to mention other key components like electrode binders, current collectors, additives, and conductive agents. A thorough analysis of graphite, both natural and synthetic, as well as silicon-based anodes, lithium titanate, lithium metal; LCO, NMC, LFP, NCA, and sulphur presents advantages and disadvantages of each material from both a technological and a strategic standpoint. The report includes ten year forecasts from 2018 through 2028 that detail the market share of each material over the next decade, answering key questions like:
- What applications will LFP find after new regulations in China?
- When is it more convenient to use lithium titanate as opposed to graphite?
- What is the state of development with silicon anodes, and will they be used in silicon-dominant or graphite-dominant blends?
- Are solid-state batteries ready for commercial development?
Through primary research, technology insights, and an impressive resource base, IDTechEx has put together a unique report that details all of the above, together with our signature ten-year market forecasts and a worldwide, comprehensive overview of the battery industry of the future.
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