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Korea invests to protect EV battery makers in trade spat with Japan

Thu, 08/08/2019 - 10:27 -- John Shepherd
Korea invests to protect EV battery makers in trade spat with Japan

South Korea has confirmed plans to invest about 7.8 trillion won (US$6.5 billion) in supporting the country’s battery sector and other key domestic industries in a trade row with Japan.

South Korea said it would boost “self-sufficiency” for 100 key components, materials and equipment items such as semiconductors used in battery packs for electric vehicles— aiming to ease the country’s dependency on other nations.

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South Korea to open dedicated lithium-ion EV battery recycling centre

Thu, 08/01/2019 - 12:15 -- Paul Crompton
South Korea to open dedicated lithium-ion EV battery recycling centre

South Korea has broken ground on the country’s first recycling centre dedicated to breaking and recycling electric vehicle battery packs.

South Korean company Earthtech will invest 24 billion won (US$20 million) in the recycling centre in Yeonggwang Country, South Jeolla Province, according to the country’s news outlet The Korea Bizwire.

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LG Chem contest to find world’s ‘battery innovators’

Wed, 07/24/2019 - 12:32 -- Paul Crompton
LG Chem contest to find world’s ‘battery innovators’

An international contest to find the battery tech innovators of the future has been launched by South Korea’s LG Chem.

The lithium-ion battery maker is asking for proposals relating to battery cells, packs and “all next generation battery technologies” for its LG Chem Global Innovation Contest.

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Cause of ESS fires in South Korea ‘still unknown’

Fri, 05/03/2019 - 10:37 -- John Shepherd
Cause of ESS fires in South Korea ‘still unknown’

South Korea’s government said investigators need more time to discover the cause of a series of energy storage system (ESS) fires— and a temporary manufacturing ban continues for several manufacturers.

More than 20 ESS units across the country went up in flames over the past year, the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy (Motie) has confirmed.

The government asked public institutions, large multi-purpose facilities and domestic ESS users to stop using their devices as a temporary safety measure.

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LG Chem’s batteries aid record sales

Mon, 02/11/2019 - 00:00 -- John Shepherd

South Korean battery giant LG Chem said the company achieved record battery sales in the fourth quarter of 2018.

Battery sales for the period exceeded KRW2 trillion (US$1.8 billion), helping push overall sales for the whole of 2018 to a total of KRW28.18tn— the highest since the company was created.

LG Chem said while overall sales grew 9.7% year-on-year in 2018, operating profit fell 23.3% year-on-year to KRW2.24tn.

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Posco shake-up bid to boost materials sales

Mon, 01/14/2019 - 00:00 -- John Shepherd

South Korea’s Posco is set to merge two of its business units to boost its global share of the battery materials market.

Posco’s board is expected to approve the merger of its Chemtech and ESM lithium-ion cathode materials divisions next month— on condition that no more than 20% of shareholders object.

If approved, the merger would take place in April 2019. Chemtech would integrate all group R&D capabilities for cathode materials to “fully develop next-generation cutting-edge products, while also promoting sales expansion”.

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Battery giants back Korean R&D investment fund

Wed, 12/19/2018 - 00:00 -- John Shepherd
Yunmo Sung

Three South Korean battery giants have signed up to an agreement to support the launch of a government-backed “next-generation batteries investment fund”.

Samsung SDI, LG Chem and SK Innovation have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to support the KRW1 billion (US$885,000) fund, the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Energy (MOCIE) said.

The signing comes a year after South Korea’s government said it would support plans to expand domestic battery production and challenge China’s increasing dominance of the global market.

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SK Innovation battery project targets US automotive market

Mon, 12/03/2018 - 00:00 -- Hugh Finzel
Governor Nathan Deal

SK Innovation plans to invest 1.98 trillion South Korean won (US$1.01 billion) to establish an electric vehicle (EV) batteries production base in Jackson County, Georgia as they look to establish themselves in the US, “the largest battleground of global automakers”.

The plant will be built on a 278-acre site in Commerce City and is expected to have an annual production capacity of 9.8 gigawatt-hours.

The announcement confirms speculation of such a project reported earlier this year.

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Kokam deploys ‘high energy’ BESS systems in South Korea

Mon, 12/03/2018 - 00:00 -- John Shepherd

South Korean battery company Kokam has been selected to provide photovoltaic-connected battery energy storage systems for two projects in the country.

Kokam will deploy its high energy lithium nickel manganese cobalt oxide (HE NMC) battery technology for the projects, which total 40 megawatt-hours (MWh) of BESS capacity.

The storage systems are needed for renewable capacity firming and energy time shifting, Kokam said.

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Korea team claim lithium metal performance breakthrough

Mon, 11/19/2018 - 00:00 -- John Shepherd
Kist researcher Moon-Sek Kim (left) and Dr Won-Il Cho (right) are testing their lithium metal ion battery using a drone and some LEDs (Photo: Business Wire)

Researchers in South Korea say they have developed “essential technologies” to boost the safety and performance of lithium metal batteries.

The Korea Institute of Science and Technology (Kist) team claim their research “can be potentially applied to various industrial applications, especially for un-manned vehicles” such as self-driving cars.

Kist said the lithium metal battery it has developed “exhibits twice the energy density to that of a conventional lithium-ion battery”.

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