SFA has supplied inspection equipment to SK Innovation for the latter’s electric vehicle battery factory at Changzhou, China, TheElec has learned.
They are vision equipment that uses artificial intelligence (AI).
The deal is worth less than US$1 million but as Changzhou factory is planned as a mother fab by SK Innovation, it may pave way for a substantial increase in equipment order going forward.
SFA supplies mostly distribution equipment used in battery production. These are used in the formation process. The company last year won a large order from SK Innovation the latter’s factory in Georgia, the US.
SFA later supplied degassing equipment for SK Innovation’s mother fab in South Korea __ the Seosan factory.
The company is also preparing notching, stacking and tab welding equipment.
These were previously supplied by Youil Energy Tech, Woowon Technology and Mplus to SK Innovation.
The South Korean battery giant could choose these equipment from SFA over others to diversify its suppliers, a person familiar with them matter said.
Inspection equipment were finding a variety of use in the battery production line and can be a key growth engine for SF going forward, they said.
As of the third quarter of 2021, SFA had 74.1 billion won worth of remaining order in battery equipment. This is more than 26 billion won in semiconductor solutions and 64.1 billion won in manufacturing. Display is still SFA’s main growth driver as there was 393.6 billion order left as of the quarter.