Lithium surge lacks staying power
The ion battery in the laptop made headlines in 2006, but so far, the biggest sensation in 2007 seems to be lithium-
Ion batteries for electric vehicles.
Thank you, GM. for that.
Although dozens of companies have been increasing the power, life and safety of lithium for years
Ion technology until Volt plug was introduced by the world\'s largest car manufacturer
In a hybrid prototype earlier this month, Detroit had a high level of lithium.
At the same time, GM said it would be in two separate lithium-
Ion battery plan.
One is to work with Johnson Controls and Saft Advanced Power Solutions, and the other is to work with Cobasys and a123 systems.
Both companies are experts in battery and power systems, and both are competing with each other to win GM\'s favor.
Ion Research \"priority program\" if plug-in\"
Hybrid cars, that is, hybrid cars.
Electric vehicles can be charged through standard power outlets, driving only about 30 kilometers of electricity, will become a commercial, publicmarket reality.
GM has accepted this fact.
In the hybrid concept, when it more or less ignored the idea a year ago, it energized the new generation of battery innovators, perhaps prematurely crowned lithium-
Take ion technology as the winning means.
A recent report from USA Today says the companies are \"new rock stars in the automotive industry,\" who are adopting a non-sexy product and \"changing the way cars work\"
According to this article, many people think that the Holy Grail is lithiumion battery.
Last Thursday, Massachusetts-
The US-based a123 Systems company has announced that it has earned $40 million in revenue. S.
) More private financing, bringing its total share capital to $0. 102 billion.
Good for a non-sexy start. up.
Given that energy storage is one of the biggest innovation bottlenecks facing the planet, the excitement surrounding the new battery technology is understandable.
There is no reason for the fixing of lithium. ion batteries.
Just ask William tahill, research director at Meridian International research, a French-based technology consultancy.
Tahil recently wrote a paper entitled \"The problem of lithium\" in which he concluded that the rapid popularization of lithium
The ion battery is wrong and will inevitably backfire.
A big reason is that there is not enough lithium in the crust to stick lithium.
Ion batteries in 0. 9 billion cars in the world, while the car market is expected to grow.
This is not sustainable.
\"The analysis shows that a world that relies on lithium to make cars will soon face more stringent resource constraints than we face today with oil,\" Tahil wrote . \"
Rich South America will become a new Middle East.
\"The concentration of supply creates new geopolitical tensions rather than reducing them.
\"The biggest source of lithium-whether it\'s lithium carbonate or lithium chloride-is a limited number of salt fields and salt lake deposits in the world, mainly in countries such as Chile and Argentina.
According to tahill, the last and largest reserves of unmined lithium salt are in the Bolivian salt field.
Bolivia is said to have 5 lithium reserves.
\"4 million tons or nearly half of the global lithium metal reserve base, the proportion of lithium salt reserves is higher,\" he wrote . \".
While some are trying to get those reserves, \"the current political situation in the country has played a powerful deterrent to Western mining companies operating there.
\"To take the situation into account, consider making a 60 million Plug
In a hybrid car of one year, it contains a small amount of lithium.
Ion batteries require 420,000 tons of lithium carbonate per year, six times the current global output.
But actually, you want a decent one.
The size of the battery, so you are more likely to increase global productionfold.
This excludes the need for lithium for portable electronics.
So car manufacturers and electric car manufacturers
Car enthusiasts have to ask themselves if they focus on lithium-
Ion technology is a technology that jumps from the frying pan to the fire;
From peak oil to peak lithium.
Tahil believes this is the case and suggests that the industry should pay more attention to battery technology based on more common metals such as nickel or zinc.
This will include nickel chloride sodium or \"zebra\" batteries and zinc air batteries.
Interestingly, a business group in Ontario is trying to attract the attention of ZEBRA batteries in North America and exploring the possibility of obtaining a technical license and establishing a mass manufacturing in Canada.
Zebra battery is safe to operate, can withstand extreme hot and cold, and the charging speed is relatively fast.
Compared to most competitive technologies, nickel and other materials in batteries are recyclable and cheap.
The battery has almost a chance to shine in the United States.
It will be used in 1998 for the Mercedes class a model in the California market, but in Daimler-
Mercedes-Benz merged with Chrysler
\"Zebra has been used in Europe, but has never entered the United States. S.
\"Market,\" tahill wrote to me in an email.
Supply is limited even in Europe.
Dea sa owns the technology, and its manufacturing plants produce only 2,000 ZEBRA batteries a year-with little to no quantity needed to lower prices.
As early as July, I wrote about Acton-
The power company based in Mount Halton is testing the zebra system, storing power in the grid during low demand periods, and discharging during peak periods.
The idea is to show and attract attention to the technology.
But through its subsidiary Southwest Energy, its bigger vision
, Will establish a Zebra battery manufacturing plant in Ontario in the next five years.
The goal is to produce large enough volumes of batteries to significantly reduce costs and make them affordable for hybrid and plug-in batteries
Unfortunately, finding $0. 117 billion to achieve this has not yielded good results-at least so far.
Investors lack awareness and belief in lithium, Tahil said
Ion is where the biggest bet is.
\"People don\'t seem to understand this potential,\" he said . \"
This is a shame.
If the United States can see white stripes, the Zebra battery may be a dark horse in the energy storage competition.
\"For manufacturing industries of the size of the automotive industry, we need to have access to a wealth of resources where there will be no possible supply constraints or price fluctuations,\" Tahil continued . \".
\"The world\'s ecosystem has been overdeveloped.
When nickel and zinc are already available in our industrial infrastructure, it would be irresponsible to cause further damage to the unique and irreplaceable habitat of insufficient resources. \"starweb. blogs. com/podcasts.