Cobalt is the Most Expensive Material Used in Lithium-ion Battery Cathodes
With the transition to electric vehicles (EVs), demand for materials used to produce batteries is expected to increase dramatically. Aside from the lithium needed to produce modern lithium-ion batteries, much attention is focused on the cost of the materials used for EV battery cathode production. Cobalt is an important ingredient in lithium-ion battery cathode production, accounting for about a quarter of the cost of the battery. The price for cobalt spiked to $40 per pound in 2018, but returned to $25 dollars per pound in 2021, while the next most expensive material was nickel at $9 per pound in 2021. Due to the high cost and price volatility associated with cobalt, battery manufacturers/researchers are seeking alternatives to reduce or eliminate the need for cobalt in battery production.
Source: Nitin Muralidharan, Ethan C. Self, Marm Dixit, Zhijia Du, Rachid Essehli, Ruhul Amin, Jagjit Nanda, Ilias Belharouak, Advanced Energy Materials, Next-Generation Cobalt-Free Cathodes – A Prospective Solution to the Battery Industry’s Cobalt Problem, January 2022.
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