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Internal reference|Accelerate support for high-performance automotive power battery research and development and industrialization
Oct 08, 2018

Introduction: Strengthening the technology research and development and industrialization of high-performance automotive power batteries is a key measure for China to build a world-class advanced power battery industry cluster and realize the “overtaking of the curve” in the field of new energy vehicles.


With Japan's Matsushita Power Battery Plant settled in Dalian, South Korea's LG Chem and Samsung SDI have been put into production in Nanjing and Xi'an respectively. After the first half of 2018, the world's leading power battery manufacturers have all set production capacity in China.  Moreover, China's whitelist of automotive power battery industry has begun to open to Japanese and Korean joint ventures. China, as the world's largest new energy vehicle market, more foreign-funded enterprises will enter the country in the future, and China's power battery industry will enter an accelerated reshuffle period. .  Therefore, it is necessary to speed up the research and development and industrialization of high-performance power battery technology, and realize the new energy automobile industry's supplementary chain and strong chain. This is the key measure for China to build a world-class advanced power battery industry cluster and realize the leap-forward development of new energy vehicles. .


First, the rapid development of automotive power battery industry


(1) China, Japan and Korea are leading the world in power battery technology

Power battery is the core component of new energy vehicles. At present, China, South Korea and Japan have become the world leader in power battery.  In 2017, the global power battery shipments were 62.35GWh. The three countries of China, Japan and Korea swept the top ten global power battery companies in 2017, and the cumulative shipments of ten companies accounted for 80% of the global power battery.  Among the top ten companies, China has seven companies including Ningde Times and BYD, and South Korea has two companies, LG Chem and Samsung SDI, and a Japanese company with Matsushita Electric Appliances.

Japan and South Korea have certain advantages in power battery technology research and development and manufacturing processes. China has the most complete power battery industry chain in the world. In 2017, China's new energy vehicle production reached 777,000 units, accounting for half of global sales.  In the future, the global competition of power batteries will become increasingly fierce. Chinese enterprises will gradually expand from the domestic market to the international market. Japanese and Korean companies will further exert their efforts in the Chinese market. China will become the main battlefield for global power battery competition.

From the development direction, the future automotive power battery technology will be in the direction of high energy density, high cycle and safety.  Power companies have stepped up their efforts to develop a new generation of high-performance power batteries.  The first is to improve the power battery specific energy, to compete with the fuel car, battery performance needs to be further improved, according to estimates, if the battery specific energy can be increased to 300 watt-hour / kg, can meet the needs of various types of cars, the country of 2018 The average energy density of the second batch of new energy vehicle catalogues is 142.4Wh/kg.  In addition, the power battery still has a battery system life is not enough, about 5-8 years the battery needs to be eliminated; there are battery safety issues, electric vehicle explosion and burning events, but also make battery safety issues more prominent.

(2) However, there is structural overcapacity in China's automotive power battery industry.

According to the data of the High-tech Lithium-Ion Industry Research Institute (GGII), the national power battery capacity in 2017 is 180Gwh, and the capacity utilization rate is only 40%. The domestic power battery industry has already had a certain overcapacity, some products are positioned at low end, and price competition is fierce. Some enterprises Product slow-moving, debt crisis and even bankruptcy.  China Automotive Technology and Research Center announced that the number of automotive power battery manufacturers in 2017 was less than 100, a 33% decrease from 2016, and the number of lithium iron phosphate battery manufacturers decreased by about 50%.  However, the high-performance power battery market is under-supplied. The capacity utilization rate of key enterprises such as Ningde Times and BYD is above 80%, which accelerates the expansion of production. It is reported that Ningde Times plans to increase the power battery capacity by 34GWh by 2020, with a total capacity of 50GWh. BYD plans to increase its production capacity by 23GWh and its total capacity will reach 40GW.  As a result, China's power battery industry has a structural overcapacity, and the market polarization is obvious, that is, the supply of high-end products is insufficient and the low-end production capacity is excessive.

First, the iterative upgrade of power battery technology has accelerated, and major technical breakthroughs and industrialization of high-performance power batteries have lagged behind.  In recent years, key technologies such as battery materials, single cells, and battery systems have developed rapidly, and power battery technology has accelerated its iteration, driving the development of automotive power batteries toward safer, longer life, and faster charging.  At present, ternary lithium battery technology is in the mainstream position. Power battery technologies such as solid-state batteries and fuel cells are in the process of tackling. Emerging technologies such as graphene batteries, solid-state lithium batteries, hydrogen fuel cells, and aluminum air batteries are likely to subvert the future. Power battery industry pattern.  In the international market, power battery companies such as Panasonic, LG Chem, and Samsung SDI have formed industrial alliances with well-known car companies such as Tesla, Renault, and BMW.  In the domestic market, before 2015, battery companies focused on lithium iron phosphate battery technology, BYD and other companies betting on the "lithium iron phosphate" technology route, while the ternary lithium battery is becoming mainstream technology, there are only a few in China. The manufacturer has the ability to supply ternary lithium batteries, and the performance and consistency of the products need to be improved. The development and production capacity of power batteries needs to be improved, and the international standards (mainly Panasonic, LG Chemical, Samsung SDI and other Japanese and Korean companies) are benchmarked. Domestic battery companies have a certain gap in technology research and development and industrialization, and the supply of high-performance power battery products is relatively insufficient.

Second, a large amount of capital poured into the automotive power battery industry, resulting in overcapacity in the industry, especially in the middle and low-end production capacity.  In recent years, affected by financial subsidies and exemption from purchase tax, the new energy vehicle industry has experienced explosive growth, and a large amount of capital investment has entered the field of new energy vehicles, especially in the battery field.  Statistics show that in 2017, the amount of investment in lithium batteries and their upstream materials announced by domestic listed companies totaled 217.9 billion yuan, and the investment in lithium battery projects alone was 136.3 billion yuan. The total investment of some projects such as Jinshajiang Capital and Bojun New Energy exceeded 100. 100 million yuan.  Because some enterprises (including social capital) lack certain knowledge of the power battery and new energy automobile industry, lack of technical reserves, and pursue early production and scale effect, resulting in a certain proportion of low-end and medium-end production capacity.  In 2017, the total installed capacity of China's new energy vehicle power battery is about 36.4GWh. Among them, the installed capacity of ternary lithium materials accounts for less than 44%, while other materials such as lithium iron phosphate and lithium manganate account for more than 56%.  Moreover, due to the imperfect technical standards of the power battery in the past two years, the low degree of automation of production equipment, and the low level of production technology, some low-end products do not meet the requirements of new energy vehicles to promote the technical standards of power batteries, such as batteries. The product does not meet the battery energy density standard required by the subsidy New Deal.


Second, the countermeasures suggestion


(1) Giving full play to the main role of leading enterprises in the collaborative innovation system, breaking through key common technologies and exploring new paths for power battery technology

The first is to strengthen the nation's power battery innovation capacity building.  Further improve the operation mechanism of the National Power Battery Innovation Center, improve the company's shareholding structure and corporate governance structure, focus on improving the market decision-making position of battery-leading enterprises in the "company + alliance" structure, better play the role of the battery enterprise market, and crack Technical bottlenecks in battery materials, single cells, battery systems, etc.  Vigorously build provincial and municipal power battery innovation centers, it is recommended that Ningde era, BYD, Guoxuan Hi-Tech, Tianjin Lishen and other battery companies as the backbone, integrate the strength of scientific research institutes, further expand the openness and absorption of international enterprises to join, forming a key commonality With the goal of technology R&D supply, transfer diffusion and first commercialization, we will carry out key common technology and forward-looking technology research, as well as intellectual property layout and reserves, build an open platform for power battery technology integration and R&D, and explore new paths for automotive power battery technology.

The second is to increase the support of theoretical research and technical research and development of power batteries.  Combine the plans for new energy vehicles and new materials for batteries, clarify key technologies and key areas of power batteries, and increase research on power battery related theories and core technologies of national key scientific and technological projects such as “National Key R&D Program” and Natural Science Fund; The funds for transformation and upgrading, as well as special funds for various industrial developments, will focus on supporting the research and development of power batteries; guiding the local government's new energy vehicle industry support policies, and focusing on increasing the investment in key technologies such as power batteries from the promotion and application links.

(2) Giving full play to the adjustment role of industrial policies, strengthening the role of financial and financial guidance, and supporting the industrialization of high-performance power batteries

The first is to play a guiding role in industrial policy and support the application of high-performance battery products.  In combination with the whitelist work of the automotive power battery industry, considering the factors such as monomer energy density, performance parameters, monomer type, product safety, etc., establish and form a brand mechanism for automotive power battery companies, and encourage downstream vehicle companies to integrate and use, such as improving The “Parallel Management Measures for Average Fuel Consumption of Passenger Vehicle Enterprises and New Energy Vehicle Points” (“Double Points” policy) will increase the integral value of related products and guide the automotive industry to apply high-performance battery products on a large scale.

Second, the combination of industry and finance supports high-performance battery industrialization projects.  Strengthen the docking cooperation between the competent departments of the automobile industry and the finance and finance departments, form differentiated financial policies, support the financing and investment focus to the whitelist of the battery industry, and control the loan quotas for new power battery projects that do not meet the national standards and industrial trends. Financial institutions prudently lend.

The third is to continuously improve the financial support for the promotion of high-performance power battery applications.  Combine the energy density and energy consumption coefficient of the battery, gradually increase the energy density threshold of the power battery system, encourage high-performance power battery applications, and promote the implementation of the “Enhanced Action Plan for the Development of Automotive Power Battery Industry”. 300 watt-hours/kg, the system is more than the main goal of 260 watt-hours/kg.

The fourth is the innovative power battery industrialization investment model.  Support the local government to set up a guiding fund, use the market-oriented mechanism, absorb social capital to set up a car power battery industry development fund, and support the industrialization of power battery technology.

Source: New Energy Auto News