Showa Denko to Increase VGCFTM Production Capacity by 30%,Aiming to Extend Life of LIBs and Reduce CO2 Emission
December 21, 2022
Showa Denko K.K.
Showa Denko K.K. (SDK) (TOKYO: 4004) has decided to increase its production capacity for VGCFTM (vapor grown carbon fiber), which is added to cathodes and anodes of lithium ion batteries (LIBs) to improve electrical conductivity. In the LIB market, where the demand for the product is rapidly increasing, especially the demand for LIBs to be used in xEVs (electric vehicles including hybrid vehicles) is growing very rapidly. VGCFTM is an essential material for LIBs. As a result, the demand for VGCFTM is rapidly growing especially among LIB manufacturers who provide European car manufacturers with LIBs. Aiming to respond to such a rapidly growing demand, SDK has decided to increase its capacity to produce VGCFTM. SDK will start to operate the expanded VGCFTM production facilities in October 2023. The expanded facilities, which are located in Kawasaki Plant, will have a capacity to produce 400 tons of VGCFTM per year, which is 33% more than the current capacity of 300 tons per year.
Repetition of charging and discharging gradually makes it difficult for lithium ion to move about, and causes deterioration of LIBs’ performance including a decrease in changing capacity. However, application of fibriform VGCFTM to cathodes and anodes of LIBs maintains movableness of lithium ion, thereby controlling deterioration of LIBs’ performance. Since VGCFTM is a fibriform material with high dispersiveness, addition of small amount of VGCFTM increases LIBs’ capacity and extends the life of LIBs. Furthermore, since VGCFTM has high heat conductivity, it improves LIBs’ heat management by accelerating heat dissipation from electrodes. As a result of these advantages, application of VGCFTM extends LIBs’ life, and is expected to contribute to reduction of CO2 emission throughout the life cycle of LIBs.
The Showa Denko Group produces various materials for LIBs including VGCFTM; aluminum laminate film “SPALFTM”※1; binder for anode “PolysolTM”※2; and anode materials. The Group will continue contributing to sustainable development of global society through provision of products that help energy conservation and reduction of environmental burden.
- ※1 SPALFTM is a laminate film consisting of resin layers and aluminum leaves, used as a packaging material for pouch-type LIBs. It has high insulation performance and excellent moldability.
- ※2 Binder for LIB functions as an adhesive that binds active materials for anodes and cathodes where lithium ion goes in and out, and current collectors. SDK’s PolysolTM has high heat- and cold-resisting properties superior to styrene-butadiene rubber (SBR), which is a conventional binding material for LIBs.
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