Contemporary Amperex Technology Ltd (CATL), the world’s largest electric car battery maker, based in the Chinese coastal city of Ningde, has unveiled a new battery which runs on the cheap and abundantly available sodium instead of lithium.
Dr. Robin Zeng, chairman of company, unveiled the company’s first-generation sodium-ion battery, together with its AB battery pack solution – which can integrate sodium-ion cells and lithium-ion cells into one pack.
CATL said that the new batteries will be mainly used in energy storage systems and two-wheeled vehicles, and will serve as a supplement to lithium-ion batteries.
Based on a series of innovations in the chemistry system, CATL’s first generation of sodium-ion batteries has the advantages of high-energy density, fast-charging capability, excellent thermal stability, great low-temperature performance and high-integration efficiency, among others.
The energy density of CATL’s sodium-ion battery cell can achieve up to 160Wh/kg, and the battery can charge in 15 minutes to 80% SOC at room temperature.
Moreover, in a low-temperature environment of -20°C, the sodium-ion battery has a capacity retention rate of more than 90%, and its system integration efficiency can reach more than 80%.
The sodium-ion batteries’ thermal stability exceeds the national safety requirements for traction batteries.
About 70% of the world’s lithium resources are concentrated in South America, while 80% of China’s lithium supply depends on imports. In order to reduce this dependence on imports CATL’s is coming up with new chemistry batteries.
Reference- CATL website and Newsroom, Reuters, Inside EVs, Green Car Congress