Why Lithium Ion Battery Is Preferred in Electric Vehicles
The most important ingredient in an EV battery is cobalt, which can be a toxic metal if not handled properly. About two-thirds of the world’s cobalt is mined in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, a region where human rights activists have expressed concerns over conditions. There are also other possible sources of cobalt, such as sea floor deposits, but these also pose environmental hazards. Nickel is another important component in an EV battery.
Prismatic cells deliver more power
Prismatic cells are a type of battery cell used in consumer electronics and electric vehicles. These cells have a layered structure and deliver more power per cell. They are also more compact and less prone to failure due to vibration. This makes them ideal for portable devices.
Traditionally, prismatic cells are more expensive than pouch cells. However, as the industry continues to adopt cellular design and automation, the cost of making them is coming down dramatically. In 2020, the market for passenger vehicles will be valued at $17B. Prisma cells, which are shaped like a pyramid, promise to reach price parity with pouch cells in just a few years.
Compared to cylindrical cells, prismatic cells are more efficient. A single prismatic cell can generate 125 amp-hours of electricity at 12.8 V. Typically, a prismatic cell will need a 4S5P configuration. This configuration requires placing 4 master packs of five cells in parallel and one in series. This configuration is also popular among manufacturers of electric vehicles.
Cylindrical cells dissipate heat well
Cylindrical cells dissipating heat well in lithium ion batteries for electrical vehicles is one of the major advantages of cylindrical batteries. Cylindrical cells are smaller and have less active material, thus improving the overall capacity and cycle life. Cylindrical cells have lower internal resistance, which reduces the chance of a short-circuit. The downside to cylindrical batteries is the need to assemble thousands of cells.
Cylindrical cells have a high power density and a compact design. A typical battery pack consists of hundreds of cylindrical cells with a mere few millimeters separating them. Because the thermal status of a battery pack greatly influences its capacity and efficiency, dissipating heat around the cells is a critical feature.
Cobalt is the most valuable ingredient in lithium ion batteries
One of the most important components of an electric vehicle battery is a lithium ion battery. This type of battery contains lithium, a heavy metal that is essential for the battery to work. This substance is usually mined unethically and is expensive. Cobalt’s negative environmental impact may outweigh the benefits of electric vehicles. To address this issue, Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla, has promised to remove cobalt from all Tesla batteries by 2020. He plans to replace cobalt with manganese instead.
The demand for battery materials is expected to increase dramatically as more EVs go electric. Lithium and cobalt are both required for modern lithium ion batteries. Cobalt is a major ingredient in the lithium ion battery cathode and accounts for about a quarter of the cost of a lithium ion battery. In recent years, the cost of cobalt has increased significantly, reaching $40 per pound. But, by 2021, cobalt prices will be back to normal levels.
They can be charged and discharged many times
A lithium-ion battery is composed of two electrodes – a positive electrode and a negative electrode. As the lithium-ion battery is charged, it exchanges electrons and ions between the electrodes. These exchanges are known as redox reactions. This process also protects the battery against overcharging and overdischarge.
Lithium-ion batteries are safe to use in electric vehicles and are designed to be recharged multiple times. However, lithium-ion batteries are not indestructible and should be properly maintained to prevent premature deterioration. EV battery manufacturers install charging safeguards in their vehicles to protect the batteries during multiple rapid charging sessions.
The main benefit of a lithium-ion battery is its ability to be charged and discharged multiple times. The charger provides a flow of electrons from the cathode into the anode, which reverses the chemical reaction. As the battery recharges, the lithium-ions leave the cathode and return to the anode. The cycle repeats itself and the battery is ready for use.
They are cheaper to produce
Electric vehicles are more environmentally friendly than their gas-powered counterparts and the lithium-ion batteries are comparatively cheaper to produce. However, there are some concerns about the production of lithium-ion batteries. These concerns should be directed towards the companies producing these batteries, and not at EV manufacturers.
The main disadvantage of using large format cells is that they overheat easily, and the industry has struggled with this issue for many years. Tesla has also struggled to mass-produce these cells, and this has limited the amount of cost savings the company can realize. However, a new battery developed by Korean company Kirin features improved cell-to-pack technology, which eliminates the middle module step. The new battery is expected to be unveiled in the second quarter of this year. It is expected to come in both lithium-ion and LFP versions.
Compared to other rechargeable batteries, lithium-ion batteries can deliver more power and have a higher voltage. This is important for electric vehicles because they require high energy density. Additionally, lithium-ion batteries have a lower self-discharge rate. They usually only dissipate around 5% in the first four hours and fall to just one or two percent per month.