With the increasingly vigorous energy storage market, energy storage battery products are developing towards large capacity. According to the measured data, large-capacity battery cells can greatly increase the energy density of the energy storage system, which is one of the important trends in system development and selection.
Currently, it mainly refers to 280Ah large battery cells. In energy storage applications, large-capacity batteries cell of 280Ah and above can effectively reduce the cost of energy storage systems and reduce the difficulty of integration. They have obvious advantages and are gradually replacing the original 50Ah and 100Ah battery cell products in power storage scenarios.
1. The supply and demand of 280Ah and above large battery cells are booming
On the demand side, owners and investors of large-scale power storage facilities are paying more and more attention to 280Ah large batteries. Owners such as Huaneng and China Energy Construction all require the capacity of a single cell to be no less than 280Ah in their latest energy storage battery bidding. This year, the energy storage market demand is extremely strong, and the supply of 280Ah batteries is tense. For energy storage battery cell companies, whether it is to build a dedicated energy storage battery production line or upgrade the original power battery production line, a certain period of production expansion is required.
On the supply side, since CATL took the lead in launching 280Ah batteries cells with a long cycle life in 2020, large-capacity batteries cells are gradually replacing the original 50Ah-100Ah batteries and have become the standard equipment for energy storage project bidding or product procurement. It is reported that mainstream battery manufacturers in the industry such as EVE, HITHIUM, CALB, Great Power, REPT, GOTION HIGH-TECH, TrinaStorage, etc. have followed up and launched 280Ah battery cells or even larger capacity batteries cells intensively.
According to incomplete statistics, more than 20 companies in China have launched or planned 280Ah products and matching production capacity. As of 2022H1, there are less than 5 companies with a supply capacity of 280Ah exceeding 5GWh. It is estimated that there will be more than 10 companies with a supply capacity exceeding this level in H1 in 2023. The development trend of large-capacity batteries for energy storage batteries is obvious.
2. 280Ah and above large batteries cells have outstanding advantages
In energy storage applications, compared with small-capacity batteries, 280Ah and above large-capacity cells have obvious advantages: First, the energy density is high, the use of parts is reduced, the assembly process in the back-end integration field is highly simplified, and the cost advantage is prominent; Second, the safety of large-capacity batteries has been significantly improved, and they are more advantageous in the application of long-term energy storage scenarios; Third, large-capacity batteries reduce the number of parallel cells, making BMS management less difficult.
Owners and investors of large energy storage facilities are paying more and more attention to large 280Ah batteries. For large-scale energy storage, the application of 280Ah cells can reduce the number of cells in the entire system integration by more than half. According to the current common 40-foot 2.5MWh air-cooled energy storage container in the market, about 6,510 120Ah batteries are needed, while only 2,790 280Ah batteries are needed. Of course, 280Ah batteries also face some challenges.
First of all, the increase in the volume and capacity of the battery cell leads to the deterioration of the heat dissipation performance of the battery cell itself, so the security based on system integration should be improved accordingly. Secondly, the consistency of the production of 280Ah cells requires a manufacturing process that is much higher than the production of 50Ah-100Ah cells, and the production efficiency is low.
3. Large capacity batteries become the mainstream of energy storage batteries
In 2022, the energy storage battery industry will continue to grow at a high rate. Industry professionals said that this year is the first year in the true sense of China's electrochemical energy storage market development. According to statistics, the global energy storage battery shipments are expected to be about 125GWh in 2022, which is estimated to be about 670% and 160% higher than the 16.2GWh in 2020 and 48GWh in 2021, respectively. In order to improve safety and reduce costs, increasing battery capacity is becoming one of the main directions for product upgrades in the field of electric energy storage.
At present, 280Ah batteries have become the mainstream batteries for centralized energy storage and industrial and commercial energy storage projects. Some companies have launched upgraded versions. The capacity of the new generation of mainstream batteries will be more than 350Ah, which will promote the penetration rate of stacking technology. According to estimates by relevant sources, by 2023, the newly built 280Ah dedicated line in H1 will release about 80GWh of production capacity, and the released capacity of superimposed dynamic storage dedicated lines will exceed 150GWh.
4. Chinese companies are highly competitive in the battery sector
In terms of batteries, Chinese companies have strong global competitiveness, and large energy storage has opened the second growth curve. Among the lithium battery companies in the world, Chinese lithium battery companies are in the global leading position in terms of technology and industrial chain, and have quickly occupied the world's leading market share in the emerging energy storage lithium battery market. According to the data, the global energy storage lithium battery shipments in 2021 will be about 66.3GWh, of which Chinese companies will ship 42.3GWh, accounting for 63.8% of the world.
From the perspective of the competitive landscape, Chinese battery companies occupy a major share of the energy storage lithium battery market. From the perspective of the market share of global energy storage lithium-ion battery shipments by major companies, Chinese company CATL ranks first with a market share of nearly 25%, followed by BYD, South Korea's Samsung SDI, and South Korea's LGES. The total share of the four companies' energy storage lithium-ion battery shipments is close to 70%. In recent years, the scale of the energy storage industry has been expanding rapidly, and the pressure of cost reduction has been superimposed.
The industry has put forward an urgent demand for high economy of energy storage batteries. At present, Chinese companies are highly competitive in the energy storage battery sector, and are expected to benefit from the accelerated development of China and the global large storage market, and win the second growth curve besides power batteries.