Lithium Ion Battery Shortage: Challenges Impacting its Supply
Challenges Impacting Lithium-Ion Battery Shortage and Ways to Tackle

Lithium-ion batteries are an integral part of our life.

Yes! You read that right. They are hidden inside almost every electronic gadget we use in our daily life; from your wristwatches, mobiles, laptops, power backups to electric vehicles.

As their applications are high, so is the demand. Over the years, the demand for lithium-ion batteries has been constantly rising. In recent years, the boom of electric vehicles has amplified such batteries' demand to a major extent. Globally, the market might see a Lithium shortage right from 2023 which might lead to the decline of more than 19 million electric cars. Here are the major challenges leading to shortage.

Challenges Behind Lithium-Ion Battery Shortage

Lithium ores are rare to find. They are only found in hard rock and salt water deposits. Further, Lithium mining is an expensive, complicated, time taking, and polluting process. So, there are only a few Lithium rich countries across the world. As per the data collected by BloombergNEF in 2019, Australia is the world’s top producer of Lithium followed by China. Despite Australia being the top producer, 80% of the world’s Lithium refining is controlled by China. High export charges imposed by China are one of the primary reasons behind the high price of Lithium-ion batteries. China is not only one of the largest producers of Lithium but also its largest consumer in the world.

These issues are the primary reasons behind the supply shortage of Lithium-ion batteries.

Let us now take a look at alternative ways to tackle.

Methods to Tackle Battery Shortage

The two efficient methods to meet the growing demand are to surge the process of Lithium mining or replace Lithium-ion batteries with some effective alternatives.

Alternative Mining Approaches

One of the US-based start-ups named Lilac solutions has come up with a unique lithium extraction process that significantly reduces the time of mining. It uses a new approach of extraction where ceramic beads are used for ion exchange thus brine is filtered, and lithium gets absorbed in the liquid rejecting sodium, calcium, magnesium, and boron. This extracted Lithium is equivalent to crude oil which is to be further converted into powdered form to use in batteries.

Alternatives to Lithium-Ion Batteries

The high demand for Lithium-ion batteries conveys a clear point that they are hard to replace, yet it is possible. In the future, hydrogen fuel cells might replace Lithium-ion batteries in electric vehicles. Currently, Toyota is actively working to find a working solution using hydrogen fuel cells. In addition, Graphene supercapacitors, Aluminum-graphite batteries may soon emerge as Lithium-ion battery alternatives.

Using renewable energy sources like solar panels is another effective alternative approach.

Advantages to Buoy the Demand of Lithium-Ion Batteries

Lithium-ion batteries are lightweight and available in different shapes and sizes. They last longer due to their higher charge density, have a slow discharge rate, and low maintenance cost. Due to these advantages, they have become the most used batteries in high demand. With effective alternatives, it is anticipated that their demand would be substantially fulfilled in the near future.

To know more about the current market scenario for the Lithium-Ion Battery Market, request a sample.