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LG Chem to supply Li-ion cells to Faraday Future; targeting highest energy density production cell for automotive battery

4 October 2016

Faraday Future (FF) announced a partnership with LG Chem to supply lithium-ion cells for FF’s electric vehicles. The partnership also represents a joint commitment between both companies to collaborate on the development of EV battery technology, resulting in the world’s highest energy density for a production automotive battery.

These cells will be incorporated into Faraday Future’s VPA platform, the company’s universal and scalable modular battery structure that supports the development of a range of vehicles. The VPA platform is a critical component to Faraday Future’s future product portfolio.

LG Chem worked closely with Faraday Future to develop a tailored cell chemistry to optimize the range and safety of our mass production battery hardware.

—Tom Wessner, VP of Global Supply Chain, Faraday Future

VPA is based on a modular, compact block of battery cells (modules). These battery blocks are assembled into groups of six and arranged into strings, which are then laid into the chassis floor. By adding or removing a battery string, FF can adjust a vehicle’s size, shape, weight, power output, and travel range.

Vpa1
Faraday Future’s VPA. Battery modules (upper left) are assembled into 6-unit strings (upper right), which are then added or subtracted to vehicle design according to size and application requirements. Click to enlarge.

Adding strings enhances range; removing strings decreases weight and increases efficiency.

FF argues that by manufacturing using a core, customizable framework, it can bring new vehicles to market quickly with lower environmental impact.

LG Chem currently has more than 20 global automakers as customers.

October 4, 2016 in Batteries, Electric (Battery) | Permalink | Comments (8)

Comments

With fully self-driving car and truck services coming before 2020 the range of any BEV will be indefinite and the charging time will be zero as you can always get a new fully charged vehicle to drive on. Therefore, automotive battery makers should only focus on the costs per mile during the life of the vehicle. BEV batteries should be designed to last 1 million miles or 10 years doing 100k miles per year before degrading to 80% of their original capacity and to cost as little as possible to make. The market for cars beyond 300 miles real world range will be near zero when the BEVs are fully autonomous. Tesla is already there in terms of sufficient range so higher battery energy density is not really needed and should not come at the cost of a reduction in durability or an increase in manufacturing cost.

Henrik please do not get your hopes too high with regards to full ADVs. Changes never come very fast in the ground vehicle industry.

After 20+ years of trying, BEVs are less than 0.5% of the vehicles driven around. In another 20 years, ADVs may be less than 1% of the vehicles on the roads.

To go much faster/further, batteries performances will have to reach close to 10X (or at least 1000 Wh/Kg) with prices much below $100/KW. Very quick charging facilities (under 10-12 minutes) for 200+ kWh battery packs is another challenge. That may take another 10 to 20 years.

ADVs will need multiple high accuracy sensors. The 4 to 5 sensors required, for increased safety and security, will be costly and will require powerful dual computers to analyse all pertinent info and direct appropriate corrections to the vehicle. Secondly, authorities and potential buyers will have to accept ADVs.

There may be "super cruise" this decade but probably not fully autonomous in any great numbers across the U.S.

Highest Energy Density isn't necessarily the click bait I wanted to see as a potential future EV owner.

Firstly, there's no assurance it will translate to more range. It may just mean less space consumed by batts in a today's-range design. (I need a credible 300 miles on one charge, with an option to execute 700 mile same-day drives - via pervasive fast charge stations, optional packs, whatever.)

But more importantly, what, if anything was traded off to get that density? Density alone, without claims of equal or longer battery life, and without equal or lower lifetime TCO, just raises eyebrows.

"I need a credible 300 miles.."

I have seen no extensive marketing done on what people need for range.
It seems like corporations that invest huge sums would do this up front.

Harvey driverless tech is not part of the “ground vehicle industry” that as you say moves slowly with a new model design every 6 year or so. Driverless tech is part of the typical consumer electronics industry because it is based on the same sensors and computer chips and that industry moves fast with new product launches every year and software updates every month. Tesla’s autopilot is getting a software update every month and a bigger one every year. Moreover, Tesla’s autopilot hardware will get updated every second year. Expect new auto pilot hardware by summer 2017 and another hardware update by summer 2019. The one in 2019 will enable all Tesla BEVs produced after summer 2019 to be fully autonomous taxis and they will obey all legal requirement of redundancy etc.

I believe Tesla is using 250 wh/kg cells currently. Battery tech is improving at 5% or so per year so Harvey do the math and you will see that at that rate of improvement for real world commercial battery tech will not reach 1000 wh/kg until 2042. By 2020 we will be at 300 wh/kg and by 2025 we will be at 388 wh/kg.

Fully driverless tech will be used in the real world before 2020 and it will be in every new vehicle sold by 2025. It takes very little time to outfit existing car models with this tech once it is done.

There is one application where we need significantly larger batteries and that is for pick-up trucks that carry tools for a craftsman. He/she cannot change vehicle because he needs to bring his heavy payload of tools with him and moving it into a new fully charged vehicle will take too long. For this application we need both larger battery packs like 150kwh and higher power charging like 300k watt or maybe even 450k w charging. Tesla is working on that one. There is also the many types of vehicles with special abilities like cranes, trash movers, sewer cleaners etc they need an even bigger battery pack (like 400kwh or more) also with really fast charging ability like a million w. They will be the last vehicles to go electric because the diesel alternatives will be less costly for some time perhaps 15 years.

I'm not at all against ADVs but it may take a few more years before they become common place. Would like to see it (soon) in taxis and city buses.

Our Hydro rich but monetary poor Province has just released a small $20M package for the development of school e-buses, city e-buses and delivery e-trucks together with 5 local industries. Too bad Quebec Hydro was not called to supply much more (10X to 50X) resources for a quick charge network. The school e-buses (Lions) are already developed and being built at a slow 50/year rate.

Near future graphene enhanced Li-on batteries may supply up to 10X the energy storage per volume and recharge many thousand times to 90% in a few seconds, much like super capacitors.

If manufacturing cost is not too exorbitant, it could become a potential solution for future extended range vehicles, e-planes, e-drones, laser guns, portable gadgets (phones, tablets laptops etc), Solar energy storage etc.

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