Lithium Australia has successfully developed a new lithium-ion cell by introducing manganese into its lithium ferro-phosphate battery technology which results in a 25 per cent energy density increase and subsequent output. According to the company, the addition of manganese gives the energy output density a boost without compromising the batteries superior attributes.
Lithium Australia has successfully developed a new lithium-ion cell by introducing manganese into its lithium ferro-phosphate, or “LFP” battery technology which results in a 25 per cent energy density increase and subsequent output. According to the company, the addition of manganese gives the energy output density a boost without compromising the batteries superior attributes.
Lithium Australia Managing Director, Adrian Griffin said: "Lithium Australia subsidiary VSPC has made great progress towards improving the production and sustainability of LIBs. Its patented technology has proved successful in the synthesis of high-energy-density LMFP battery cells, which are low-cost and retain the superior safety characteristics associated with LFP LIBs.”
“Indeed, LFP is currently increasing its share of the battery market, and commercialisation of VSPC’s LMFP will provide consumers with the best combination of safety, cost and energy density.”
“VSPC’s evaluation of low-cost feed materials for LIB production has the potential to make Australia, already the world’s largest lithium producer, a future battery manufacturing hub.”
According to Lithium Australia, its wholly-owned subsidiary, VSPC has successfully produced a lithium manganese ferro-phosphate, or “LMFP” battery cell and has generated some impressive results from initial testing. By virtue of its higher voltage, the LMFP cell provided greater energy density than that of a standard LFP cell.
VSPC-produced LMFP battery cells delivered up to 25 per cent more energy density, something the company said other major LFP cell producers around the globe are still striving for by tinkering with the addition of manganese.
On the safety front, Lithium Australia said lithium-ion batteries, or “LIB” can be divided into a number of categories based on the crystal structure of the cathode materials built into the battery cell.
The company said the most used LIB’s in electric vehicles were made of a mix of either nickel-cobalt-manganese or nickel-cobalt-aluminium, with both characterised as having a relatively low-strength, spinel chemical bond structure.
Interestingly, LFP and LMFP batteries are composed of phosphates with olivine-like crystal structures and exceptionally high chemical bond strength.
Lithium Australia said this fundamental difference resulted in superior performance in the areas of thermal stability and length of service life of LFP and LMFP LIBs.
Whilst the superior chemical composition and crystal structure improves the safety of the LFP and LMFP battery cell, the use of manganese, iron and phosphorous over nickel or cobalt reduces cost and delivers a more reliable supply chain, according to Lithium Australia.
VSPC is also looking to reduce costs further, plus improve sustainability by evaluating the use of industrial waste materials and spent LIBs as feedstocks for its new range of LFP and LMFP battery cathode powders.
VSPC’s alchemy looks to have concocted some interesting new cathode powders as it churns through some robust Federal Government grant funding, along with its collaborators at the CSIRO, the University of Queensland and Soluna Australia.
The next step for ASX-listed Lithium Australia’s VSPC will be to turn its LFP and LMFP cathode powder blends into a transport industry-friendly, rapid-charging battery.
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