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Thursday, July 2, 2009

Hitachi to Boost Li-Ion Battery Output 70 fold by 2015

Hitachi Ltd will invest US$207-310 million to increase production capacity for lithium-ion batteries for hybrid vehicles. Capacity will initially be raised more than 600% by next autumn. Hitachi has already received lithium ion battery orders for 100,000 hybrids from General Motors Corp for delivery next year. The company will bolster capacity to meet demand for 700,000 hybrids a year. Each vehicle is generally equipped with 30-50 lithium ion battery cells.

Hitachi will mass produce two new types of lithium ion batteries for use in next-generation hybrid vehicles. In addition to significant improvements in output density, they are half the weight and size of conventional nickel-metal hydride offerings.

Hitachi, who supply the battery pack in the Subaru Stella EV, is targeting a 70-fold increase in production by 2015 with Li-ion battery sales to hit US$1 billion in, representing about 16% of the projected global market by value.

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