L R AS Published on Saturday 24 September 2022 - n° 417 - Categories:battery materials
Lithium prices continue to rise
The growing demand for lithium-ion batteries for industry and automobiles has inflated the price of lithium in recent years. In 2022 (and until 22 September), the spot price of 99.5% lithium carbonate (Li2CO3) in China increased
by 81% to RMB 501 ($70.7) per kilogram. The London Metal Exchange (LME) one-month lithium hydroxide futures price closed at $77.2 per kilogram on 22 September, after rising 237% this year.
Car safety is driving carmakers to adopt LFP batteries. While nickel-based ternary batteries offer higher energy density, lithium batteries are generally safer than ternary or lead-acid batteries.
Lead-acid batteries are mainly used in industrial applications such as emergency power systems. According to Truewin, a Taiwanese supplier of LFP batteries, companies needing a continuous power supply are replacing lead-acid batteries with lithium batteries.
In the past, the costs of LFP batteries were higher than those of lead-acid batteries, so the benefits of LFP batteries have only been recognised in recent years.
Energy storage systems will be a huge market in the future as renewables take centre stage globally.
Digitimes 23 September 2022
Editor's note: There is increasing talk of a lithium shortage driving up battery prices. No one seems to be able to say, at the moment, whether this shortage will be resolved or whether it will continue.
This alternative is particularly important for the future: if the shortage is resolved, the price of batteries will fall and their use will increase, since the whole world seems to have adopted lithium batteries.
If, on the other hand, the shortage persists and prices remain high, this will hinder the development of electric vehicles. An alternative technology would then have to be found urgently. Otherwise,CO2 emissions would continue to rise and disrupt the climate. Not only would vehicles be hindered in their expansion, but also renewable energies, since their intermittency requires the conservation of the energy produced to use it when needed.
It is curious that this alternative is not mentioned more, or that it finds a temporary or definitive answer. In the unknown, there is more bias than reflection.