Lithium-Ion market to continue to surge, iSuppli predicts

Staff writer
19 Aug 2011
00:00

Driven by plunging prices and accelerating demand from the electric and hybrid automobile market, lithium-ion will emerge as the world’s leading rechargeable battery technology and achieve 350 % revenue growth from 2010 to 2020, according to a report.

The new IHS iSuppli Rechargeable Batteries Special Report also said global lithium-ion battery revenue is expected to expand to $53.7 billion in 2020, up from $11.8 billion in 2010.

Revenue will rise to $31.4 billion in 2015, allowing lithium-ion to surpass the current dominant rechargeable battery technology, lead acid.

While lithium-ion will find wide usage in mobile electronics products such as cellphones and notebook PCs, usage in cars will fuel the bulk of sales growth.

“Lithium-ion at present is much more expensive than alternative technologies, costing two to three times as much as sodium-sulfur, lead-acid and nickel-metal-hydride rechargeable batteries,” said Satoru Oyama, principal analyst of Japan electronics research for IHS. “However, lithium-ion pricing will decline much more rapidly than the other technologies, coming close to cost parity in 2015, and then becoming the least expensive type of rechargeable battery in 2020.

Lithium-ion delivers several enhancements compared to other rechargeable battery technologies. These advantages include more flexible form factors and lighter weight. Furthermore, lithium-ion devices have no memory effect, meaning they maintain their full capacity even after a partial recharge. Finally, lithium-ion batteries are considered to be more environmentally safe than other technologies.

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