More electric vehicle (EV) makers are expected to adopt cylinder batteries that were once thought of as old news.
Cylinder batteries were once used mostly in notebooks and handsets but were steadily replaced by prismatic and pouch batteries on those devices.
But thanks to Tesla’s wide adoption of cylinder batteries __ it is used on Model 3, Model S and Model Y __ more and more automakers are following its lead in adopting the battery type.
BMW, General Motors and Stellantis are some of the companies planning to adopt cylinder batteries on their EVs.
BMW has been the most active of the three, having contacted Samsung SDI and LG Energy Solution last year to co-develop new cylinder batteries.
The companies are developing a cylinder battery that combines the advantages of 2170 and 4680 batteries.
General Motors is in the research stage: it is reviewing whether 2170 batteries can be used in its existing EV models.
Stellantis will need to develop a standard cylinder battery that can be adopted across all its many auto brands from Fiat to Peugeot.
This revived interest in cylinder batteries is thanks to their productivity. Anode, cathode and separators are rolled together and put in a can.
Production per minute for the batteries is accelerating: Samsung SDI recently increased the PPM for its factory in Malaysia for the batteries from 200PPM to 300PPM. This equals an increase of 20% per year.
The performance of winders used in production is the key for their productivity.
For example, 4680 batteries will require single-acting machine and new electrolyte injectors. It is more difficult to manufacture these larger batteries at high speed.
The high demand for cylinder batteries has also made it difficult for power tools and e-bike companies to procure them.
These companies are asking for more factories that manufacture cylinder batteries. LG Energy Solution is building a factory dedicated to cylinder batteries in Arizona because of this.