GROWING ADOPTION OF LITHIUM-ION BATTERY IN CONSUMER ELECTRONICS
Lithium ion batteries are being extensively penetrated in the electronics industry, especially in smartphones due to their various positive traits, such as high energy density, long shelf life, low maintenance and they are user-replaceable. The lithium-ion battery market is set to witness a strong growth over the coming years due to established place in power and energy densities for mobile applications, such as pacemakers, digital cameras, PDAs and smartphones, watches, calculators, laser pointers, remote car locks, thermometers among other electronic devices.
Traditionally, graphite anode materials have been used for lithium-ion batteries but the short supply of graphite has turned the solution to the silicon anode materials as exploitation of natural sources for the production of graphite is now coupled with strict regulations. And also, the high performance capacity of silicon with low use of anode materials is anticipated to witness an upsurge in demand for silicon anode lithium-ion batteries with the growth in global consumer electronics consumption, especially smartphones.
HIGH ENERGY STORAGE CAPACITY OF SILICON
Silicon has the enormous storage capacity which makes it potentially decisive advantageous over the materials used in commercial available lithium-ion batteries. Silicon demonstrates much larger energy density than graphite that a ton of silicon is capable of storing enough energy to power approximately 28 houses for a day. Use of silicon anode battery enhances the potential of the battery by storing such vast amount of energy, which drives the commercialization of silicon in lithium ion batteries. For an instance, the high energy storage helps automobiles manufacturers to increase electric range of vehicles with less number of batteries. Additionally, current requirements in smartphones, such as playing high graphic resolution games along with ROM/RAM utilization, video streaming and other operations reduce the battery performance, which can be increased by ten times by replacing graphite with silicon. Such enormous energy storage capacity of silicon enhances the potential of the battery which is expected to drive the growth of silicon anodes in lithium-ion batteries
Cost is the major factor to drive any market and the silicon anode battery market is expected to be driven by the fact it is cost-effective and doesn’t face any budget constraint as silicon is the most plentiful element in the nature after oxygen, which makes it almost unlimited cost-effective resource. Also, the high energy capacity of the silicon reduces the number of batteries required in any device or automobile, which also helps reducing the cost of manufacturing. In addition to this, manufacturing cost can be reduced further by growing silicon nano wires with graphite or carbon materials. Abundance of silicon in nature poses high availability of the resource for the commercial usage and also impacts the cost structure positively that it can be mass produced in lower costs. In addition to this, silicon also enhances the storage capacity of the battery which results into less number of required batteries. Thus, using silicon anode in batteries reduces the manufacturing cost of the application, such as automobiles, electronic devices among other applications.
UPSURGE IN DEMAND FOR SILICONE ANODE BATTERY IN AUTOMOTIVE INDUSTRY
Nano composite materials of silicon in lithium-ion batteries enhance the performance of the battery significantly in automotive, which results into deliberation of silicon anode batteries as the next-generation batteries. Hence, they are mostly employed in electric vehicles, electric bicycles, and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles. Cost is also impacted with the use of silicon in electric vehicle batteries. For an instance, Researchers at Vrije University, Belgium have estimated that by using silicon in electric vehicle batteries can cut the cost per KW hour by 30%. Thus, the silicon anode materials are anticipated to witness an upsurge in demand for silicon anode batteries in electric vehicles and are expected to drive the growth in silicon anode battery market with the growth in consumption of electric vehicles.
HIGH INITIAL INVESTMENT COST FOR DATA CENTER CONSTRUCTION
The increasing number of businesses across the world has increased demand for data centres for managing the data that is generated on the daily basis. The increasing installation of servers tends to increase the organization infrastructure cost for setting up the whole architecture. As a result, server manufacturers are developing high-density cabinets that will help organizations to efficiently manage those servers. For setting up the entire infrastructure, the organisation has to invest heavily at initial stage. Due to this, small enterprises do not have budget for the construction of data centre to manage these servers separately. As these small enterprises has limited budget that restrict them to spend on data center construction.
For instance, the cost of per square foot for data center construction is between $1,300 and $2,000 and this includes construction, infrastructure, computer servers and others.
Hence, high initial cost to construction data center for storing data and managing server is hampering the overall growth of the data center construction market globally.
VOLUMETRIC EXPANSION OF SILICON ANODE
Li–ion batteries are the rechargeable batteries for energy storing purpose. In Li-ion batteries, silicon is a best material for fabricating next-generation Li-ion batteries because silicon has potential to increase longer cycle life of batteries and has higher energy density to help meet the high requirements of electric vehicle. Also, the diffusion of lithium plays one of the dominant role in lithiation of amorphous silicon, thereby hampering the overall growth. For instance, large volumetric expansion up to 400% of silicon anodes causes degradation of silicon particles and destruction of the SEI (solid-electrolyte interphase). In addition to it, this issue can create drastic capacity fade and can damage the electrodes in the batteries results in hindering the commercial application of Silicon anodes in lithium ion batteries. Hence, volumetric expansion of silicon anode can be considered as one of the restraining factors for the China silicon anode material battery market.
HIGH GLOBAL SMARTPHONE CONSUMPTION
The global smartphone consumption has grown extensively in the year 2018 due to digitalization and rapid increase in internet users. There are around 4 billion active users of smartphones globally, which is a huge number of users. Such extensive use of smartphones has opened up an opportunity for the silicon anode battery market to grow as it is being adopted for the mobile applications for enhanced battery performance.
Currently, lighter, thinner and faster smartphones with advanced features have been developed and preferred more by the users across the globe. The battery performance is a considerable factor in current mobile applications, because of battery consuming operations in smartphones, such as video streaming, regular use of internet, and playing high graphic resolution games along with ROM/RAM utilization. Thus, silicon anode battery has an opportunity to grow proportionally to the growth rate of smartphone consumption.
HIGH GLOBAL ELECTRIC VEHICLE CONSUMPTION
Due to the increasing need for energy security and environmental concerns, electric vehicle market has grown significantly. According to International Energy Agency, the total units of electric vehicle sold in 2018 are over 3 million, which is a significant growth in the market. It is expected that by 2020, half of the new vehicle sales will consist of plug-in hybrid, hybrid-electric, and all-electric models. The key to this huge shift will be the lithium-ion batteries for automakers. Thus, silicon anode battery market has a huge opportunity to grow in automotive sector as silicon is the most preferred anode material for lithium-ion batteries.
A huge growth in electric vehicle sales ay global level comes up with an opportunity for the silicon anode battery market as most of the automakers are working on providing better energy capacity and performance.
LOW PRODUCTION OF GRAPHITE
Due to exploitation of natural resources, graphite production is coupled with strict regulations, which results into short supply of graphite. Silicon has emerged as the best alternative for graphite for batteries because the availability of graphite is limited as per the requirement. For an instance, a large electric vehicle battery requires about 25Kg of the graphite for the lithium-ion anode, which could cause short supply of graphite in terms of consumption and price.
Production of anode-grade graphite is expensive and also its process includes creation of waste, whereas, silicon is the second most abundant element on the earth, which makes it a cost-effective resource. For an instance, China has steadily been forcing the graphite producers to close in response to rising pollution; this may cause the rise in prices of batteries. The rapidly growing demand for lithium-ion batteries has augmented a substitute resource, silicon. Silicon anode battery has an opportunity to dominate as it is capable of replacing graphite entirely for the manufacturing of batteries. Low production of graphite due to budget constraints and environmental concerns opens up opportunities for the silicon anode battery market to grow.
ALTERNATIVE OF SILICON ANODE IN LI-ION BATTERIES
Alternative of any product can be considered when there is existence of another product having some advantages over the corresponding product. Silicon suboxide can be considered as one of the alternative of the silicon anode because of its enhanced cycling stability. Also, Silicon suboxide has better cycling performance than silicon. Many battery manufacturers are doing research on Silicon suboxide due to advantages of Silicon suboxide over silicon. For instance, In 2019, Laboratory of Advanced Technology for Materials Synthesis and Processing has been recognized Silicon oxides is a family of anode materials for high-energy lithium-ion batteries These all advantages of silicon suboxide and amorphous silicon sub-nitride over silicon can limit the overall growth of the China, Japan, and Korea silicon anode material battery market.
Some of the prominent participants operating in this market are Targray Group, Elkem ASA, SHIN-ETSU CHEMICAL CO., LTD., JSR Corporation, Albemarle Corporation, NanoGraf Corporation, Ashland, Orange Power Ltd., BTR New Energy Material Ltd. and Nexeon Limited.
China Silicon Anode Material Battery Market – Industry Trends and Forecast to 2026