Tesla warns of imminent shortage of battery raw materials

Tesla warns of imminent shortage of battery raw materials-tesla

At the Benchmark Minerals Intelligence Conference in Washington, Sarah Maryssael, Teslas Global Supply Manager for Battery metals gave you long-term, across the entire industry will be available from supplying battery raw materials such as nickel, copper and lithium. The rapid shift towards e-mobility is increasing the demand for batteries at an incredible rate, and this in turn is increasing the demand for some specific materials used in the manufacture of Li-ion battery cells.

It is well known that many companies are concerned about cobalt as it is not widely used. On average, Tesla uses less cobalt in its batteries than the rest of the industry. Instead, they focus more on nickel. Maryssael indicated that this is due to the direction of Tesla by CEO Elon Musk, who wants to use less cobalt in its own batteries.

“Cobalt is mainly degraded in the Democratic Republic of Congo, and some extraction techniques – especially those with child labor – have made use in the entire battery industry, especially at Musk, to a very unpopular procedure,” says Maryssael. Tesla sees great potential in working with mines in Australia or the United States – a step that BMW has already taken in part.

In the future, a “zero consumption” of cobalt for the production of the batteries is aimed at, if Panasonic has its way. In this case, this also benefits Tesla; because Panasonic is the exclusive battery cell supplier for Tesla’s mass-market sedan Model 3. But other companies, research institutions and Co. take this path. The American entrepreneur Kenan Sahin has developed a battery for electric cars that contains only 20 percent as much cobalt as conventional batteries.

For its part, Tesla will reuse lithium, cobalt, copper, aluminum and steel in the future in order to process them appropriately for use in new batteries. The company wants to get rid of the cycle of “taking, producing and burning fossil fuels” that is often used and instead establish recycling of old batteries in its own company.

We’ll have to wait and see where it goes. Both with the materials used in the batteries. as well as their prices. For example, the Democratic Republic of the Congo has declared cobalt a “strategic substance”. At the same time, the license fee for cobalt was increased from 3.5 to 10 percent. The percentage had already been increased from 2 to 3.5 percent in the summer. The development of cobalt-free batteries. Batteries with less cobalt content therefore seem quite understandable.

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