3M and LG Chem have entered into a patent license agreement to further expand the use of nickel, cobalt, manganese (NCM) in lithium ion batteries. Under the agreement, 3M grants LG Chem a license to U.S. Patents 6,660,432, 6,964,828, 7,078,128, 8,685,565 and 8,241,791 and all global equivalents including in Korea, Taiwan, Japan, China and Europe.
NCM cathode compositions offer an outstanding balance of power, energy, thermal stability and low cost. NCM cathode materials can be tailored through changes in composition and morphology to meet a wide range of customer requirements from high-energy handheld consumer electronics to high-power electric vehicles.
“We are pleased to have reached this agreement with 3M,” said Kyunghwa Min, vice president of LG Chem IP Center. “This license will give our battery customers confidence in LG’s technology and our long-term commitment to the battery industry. The license also opens the door to new opportunities for LG Chem as a supplier of cathode materials to the battery industry.”
“LG Chem is a leader in the electric vehicle battery field, and NCM cathode compositions have shown significant benefit in large format applications, like electric vehicles,” said Christian Milker, business manager, 3M Electronics Materials Solutions Division. “This license will accelerate the adoption of NCM technology to meet the growing demand for electric vehicles worldwide.”
LG Chem plans to offer the new cell chemistry as the foundation for an affordable electric car with a 320 km (200-mile) driving range by 2017. The company, which currently makes lithium-ion batteries based on a manganese spinel chemistry for Chevy, Ford, Hyundai, and Renault, said the next-generation technology would boost energy while reducing cost.
LG Chem says it would begin to offer large capacity lithium-ion batteries that hold between 80 and 120 kWh targeting a single charge range of 300-500 km. Such long-range EVs have the potential to dramatically shake up the electric-car landscape and appeal to a larger audience.