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Posco Chemical to supply key EV battery materials to LG-GM JV

Posco Chemical’s anode manufacturing plant in Sejong (Posco Chemical)
Posco Chemical’s anode manufacturing plant in Sejong (Posco Chemical)
Posco Chemical said Monday it would supply anodes to Ultium Cells, a joint venture established by LG Energy Solution and General Motors in 2019.

The refractory and secondary battery materials arm of South Korean steel giant Posco, it will provide anodes to Ultium Cells’ electric vehicle battery manufacturing facility in Ohio, which is set to begin the mass production of NCMA (nickel, cobalt, manganese, aluminum) batteries that contain 90 percent nickel starting this year.

“Thanks to this deal, Posco Chemical will be able to supply not only cathodes but also anodes to Ultium Cells’ EV batteries,” a company official said. Last December, Posco Chemical was selected as a vendor to supply cathodes to Ultium Cells.

Anodes and cathodes are two key components of lithium-ion batteries. Anodes, which usually consist of graphite and a small amount of silicon, decide batteries’ stability and lifespan. Cathodes, made of different metals including nickel, account for batteries’ energy density. The higher the ratio of nickel inside cathodes, the more powerful batteries become.

Last year, Posco Chemical was the fourth-biggest supplier of anodes, commanding 11 percent of the global market. Posco Chemical aims to ramp up its production capacity from the current 44,000 metric tons to 121,000 tons by 2023 and 260,000 tons by 2030. Also, it will raise the production capacity of cathodes to 400,000 tons by 2030 with the aim of controlling 20 percent of global battery material market.

By Kim Byung-wook (kbw@heraldcorp.com)
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