POSCO Chemical has developed next-generation cathode using new synthetic graphite for EV batteries, according to the company on Mar. 6. This could help cut prices to gain an edge over Chinese players, said market watchers.
POSCO Chemical explained that synthetic graphite would eventually replace the more expensive natural graphite currently being used to develop the cathode material. Featuring a capacity of 350mAh/g, the synthetic graphite-based cathode would also lengthen the lifespan of EV batteries.
According to local market research firm Yano Research Institute, the synthetic graphite market is seen to have grown by an average 24% from 2016 to 2020. This is bigger than the 15.6% of natural graphite.
The next-gen synthetic graphite is expected to be made from POSCO Chemical’s Pohang plant based on investments of up to KRW 250 billion. The company expects an annual churn-out of up to 44,000 tons when adding the supplies from the second plant in Sejong it plans to finish building by the second half of 2021.
POSCO Chemical’s shot-term goal is to add 10 more lines by 2022 for a combined 76,000 tons per year.
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