Conductive Carbon for Lithium-ion Batteries

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Background

Acetylene black is produced by the decomposition of acetylene gas in petroleum and petrochemical industries. Typically, it is used as a material in printing ink, compound in rubber products and materials for alkaline batteries. Thailand is one of the leading acetylene black producers in the world and IRPC Public Company Limited is one of the business operators of the acetylene black business in Thailand. 

The company recognizes the competence of the research personnel at the National Energy Technology Center (ENTEC) and the availability of the facilities to support research and development on batteries materials. Therefore, IRPC collaborates with ENTEC research team to conduct the research and development projects of acetylene black products to support business expansion in the next generation of batteries industry. This also helps create added value of the products by improving the production process and promote social and environmental sustainability in accordance with the shifting of the global energy transition.

Research objective

To develop acetylene black products with specific properties suitable for energy storage applications and create higher value so that the company can be competitive in the global market.

What did the research team do?

ENTEC and IRPC Public Company Limited research teams joined hands to develop acetylene black products by:

  • Analyzed characteristics and properties of the original acetylene black products of IRPC.
  • Matching the properties with possible applications as a product in battery industry.
  • Performed market analysis of carbon used the battery industry in terms of quantity, price, market structure, key market leaders and market values.
  • Analyzed technical property gaps of the company’s acetylene black vs. that in the market. Putting on targeted property and find market positioning.
  • Developed and improved acetylene black production process to obtain acetylene black products suitable for the utilization of battery industry.
  • Characterized and tested the new grade of acetylene black products of the company against the standard for commercial batteries. Formulate the composition of acetylene black with other materials to be used as lithium-ion battery terminals and validate its electrochemical properties and applicability.
  • Developed Technical Data Sheet of the product to as a support information for customers.
  • Transfered knowledge of the new products to the company.

Research results

The collaboration between the research teams of ENTEC and IRPC Public Company Limited has brought two products to the market. These products are Pim-L and Pim-AL, premium grade acetylene blacks for used as conductive carbons in the battery with following special characteristics:

  • High purity
  • High electrical conductivity
  • High tap density
  • Easily mixed up with other chemicals
  • Low electrochemical reactivity allowing lithium-ion battery allowing full capacity of the storage materials and system while prolonging service life.
  • Suitable for batteries to be uses in the electric vehicle type BEV (Battery powered electric vehicle) or Pure-EV which does not require gasoline. 

This research and development has helped IRPC Public Company Limited substantially respond well to the company’s overall goals. The undertaking increases value added of acetylene black products more than 4 times and generated the production chain, local employment and knowledge-based competitiveness in the global market.

Conductive Carbon for Lithium Ion Battery Electrodes High purity, High conductivity, Medium surface area

Research statue

ENTEC and IRPC Public Company Limited research team have jointly developed and improved the production process of acetylene black products, leading to the emergence of special products to support the more diverse needs of customers in the battery manufacturing industry and respond to the global market demand. The process has resulted in the actual commercial production of two products as follows:

  • Pim-AL: For the use in the lead-acid battery manufacturing industry
  • Pim-L: For the use in the lithium-ion battery manufacturing industry
July 15, 2020, IRPC Public Company Limited was honored to participate in the General Assembly of “BCG: Economic Model for Sustainable Development” organized by the Ministry of Higher Education, Science, Research and Innovation (MHESRI) at the IMPACT Arena, Exhibition and Convention Centre, Muang Thong Thani, Nonthaburi Province. In the company’s booth, “Pim-L”, a premium grade acetylene black product used as a carbon additive in lithium-ion battery applications, was presented.

Outlook

Continue the development of carbon based products for next generation batteries.

Research team

Dr. Pimpa Limthongkul, Dr. Worawarit Kobsiriphat, Dr. Priew Eiamlamai, Miss Phontip Tammawat, Miss Pranuda Jivaganont and Mr. Thanathon Sesuk

Contact

Papawee Likitdecharoj (Analyst)
Industrial and Business Liaison Section Business Development Division
Tel: +66 2564 6500 Ext. 4306
E-mail: papawee.lik@mtec.or.th