LG Energy Solution invests in US battery manufacturer for lithium metal battery technology

By Kim Joo-heon Posted : January 25, 2024, 14:31 Updated : January 25, 2024, 15:11
Courtesy of LG Energy Solution
[Courtesy of LG Energy Solution]

SEOUL -- LG Energy Solution, the battery-making wing of South Korea's LG Group, has partnered with Sion Power, an Arizona-based battery manufacturer, to secure technology for lithium metal batteries. Lithium metal batteries can significantly enhance the driving distance compared to the existing lithium-ion batteries.

Lithium metal batteries have been studied as they were claimed to run longer and hold more energy than lithium-ion batteries. According to LG Energy Solution (LGES), a lithium metal battery featuring lithium metal anodes demonstrates higher energy efficiency compared to a lithium-ion battery, which utilizes graphite or silicon-based anodes. However, using lithium metal batteries has been difficult because of the high chances of corrosion.
LGES said in a statement that the company will work with Sion Power to secure technologies for lithium metal batteries. Using the American company's technique, the South Korean battery maker can prevent corrosion caused by dendrites and liquid electrolytes. A dendrite is a crystalline mass that can produce undesirable side effects and reduce a battery's lifespan and safety. 

"This investment is a strategic decision to solidify our leadership in the development of next-generation technologies in the battery industry," an LGES official said in a statement on January 25. The company said it has invested in Sion Power without disclosing the investment amount.

Meanwhile, LGES developed lithium metal battery technology that offers a 50 percent increase in driving distance compared to lithium-ion batteries through a joint research team with the state-run Korea Advanced Institute of Science & Technology (KAIST). Using the technique, the driving range of electric vehicles can be extended to 900 kilometers (559 miles) per charge, up from the current 600 kilometers.
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