Four key trends of anode materials industry

Four key trends of anode materials industry

Table of Contents

Relevant data show that in the first half of 2022, China’s lithium ion battery anode material shipments were 540,000 tons, a year-on-year increase of 68%. In 2022, the shipment of anode materials reached 1.37 million tons, a year-on-year increase of 90%. Among them, the artificial graphite market accounted for 84%, and the natural graphite market accounted for 15%.

The large scale production capacity construction of anode materials in the past two years will be released in 2023 to 2024. The anode material market will become more and more concentrated in leading enterprises, and there will be structural excess production capacity. This article reviews several key trends of anode materials in 2022, and provides a certain reference for the company’s subsequent strategic adjustments.

Overall price trend of anode materials – first increase and then decrease

In terms of price, graphite materials have experienced varying degrees of price increases in H1 of 2022. Among them, the price of low end natural graphite anode materials rose from 16,500 RMB/ton to 27,000 RMB/ton, an increase of 63.64%. The price of low end artificial graphite climbed from 21,000 RMB/ton to 40,000 RMB/ton, an increase of 90.48%.

Overall price trend of anode materials - first increase and then decrease

Starting from the third quarter, with the increase in the supply of graphitization, the price of anode materials began to decline. At the same time, the price changes of needle coke, petroleum coke, pitch coke, etc. as the upstream raw materials of artificial graphite also affect the price trend of anode materials. At the end of June 2022, some oil based calcined coke exceeded 15,000 RMB/ton, which greatly pushed up the raw material cost of anode materials. After reaching a high level in the first half of the year, it began to decline in the third quarter.

By the end of 2022, the price of low end artificial graphite anode materials is 33,500 RMB/ton. According to relevant data, in mid-January, the price of low-end artificial graphite anode materials was 32,000 RMB/ton, and the price continued to decline.

Anode material overcapacity alarm sounded

On the whole, the penetration rate of China’s new energy vehicles will approach the 30% mark in 2022, and the hot drive battery companies and upstream raw material companies in the new energy vehicle market will increase production. In the field of anode materials, new production capacity is mainly based on the integration of anode materials.

Anode material overcapacity alarm sounded

Leading anode material companies realize the integrated layout of anode materials through graphitization, carbonization and raw materials, which not only effectively control costs, but also ensure the supply security of upstream raw materials, and further enhance the bargaining power with battery companies. The future integrated layout is still the mainstream of future development.

It should be noted that in addition to traditional anode material companies, multiple forces are also trying to seize the dividends in the anode material market. According to incomplete statistics, there will be 34 anode material expansion projects in 2022. With the concentrated release of production capacity, the structural surplus of anode materials will quickly appear.

Multi-party companies enter the anode material industry

From the perspective of the main body of production expansion, the current field of anode materials is mainly divided into three forces:

● One is traditional anode material companies;
● The second is the upstream raw materials or related companies of anode materials such as oil exploration, graphitization processing, and needle coke;
● The third is cross border entry companies in the fields of photovoltaics, construction machinery and ceramics.

Multi-party companies enter the anode material industry

At the same time, head battery companies are also strengthening their voice in the anode field through direct investment in construction, capital increase in joint ventures, and indirect shareholding. For example: SVOLT led the investment in Hebei Kuntian for two times; CATL, BYD, etc. jointly increased capital in Shanghai Shanshan; GOTION HIGH-TECH invested 10 billion to build a 400,000 ton anode material project in Inner Mongolia.

Generally speaking, in terms of mid-to-low-end anode materials, because of its low requirements in terms of technical threshold, capital threshold, product quality, and consistency. New market entrants are also mainly concentrated in the low-end market, and future market elimination will also focus on this. The entry threshold for mid-to-high-end anode materials is relatively high, and the scale of new supply is relatively limited, and there may still be insufficient effective supply in the future.

Silicon based materials have great development potential

With Tesla, BMW and other top car companies announcing their cooperation with 4680 series large cylindrical batteries, large cylindrical batteries have attracted much attention in the power battery market. Battery products are updated iteratively and battery materials systems are upgraded simultaneously. Silicon based materials, as anode materials suitable for large cylindrical batteries, have the advantages of low cost and high energy density, and are considered by the market to be the mainstream direction of next generation anode materials.

Silicon based materials have great development potential

Professional analysis pointed out that in 2022, the share of silicon based materials in the overall anode materials will increase significantly, increasing by nearly three times. Specifically, on the one hand, Shanshan, PUTAILAI and other old anode material manufacturers continue to expand the production capacity of silicon based materials; on the other hand, battery companies are laying out in advance and building their own silicon based material production lines.

In June, Shanshan invested in the construction of an integrated base project with an annual output of 40,000 tons of silicon based anode materials for lithium ion batteries in Ningbo. At present, Shanshan has broken through the core technology of batch synthesis of silicon based anode material precursors, completed the mass production of the second generation silicon oxygen products, and is conducting the research and development of the third generation silicon oxygen products and the new generation of silicon carbon products.

With the entry of battery companies, the application of silicon based materials in vehicles is also accelerating. GOTION HIGH-TECH said that it has a production capacity of 5,000 tons of silicon carbon anode materials, and its 210Wh/Kg LFP cells have also successfully applied silicon anodes for the first time.

Related posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Sign up for newsletter

Get latest news and update

Newsletter BG