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Nickel was king in EV battery capacity deployment in 2020

EV battery pack. (Stock image)

A report by Adamas Intelligence states that over 60% of all passenger EV battery capacity deployed globally in 2020 was in the form of high-nickel cells, such as lithium-nickel-cobalt-aluminum oxide batteries (NCA) or lithium-nickel-manganese-cobalt oxide or NCM 6- to 8-series cells. 

According to the market analyst, Europe saw the greatest deployment of high-nickel cells in 2020, with NCM 6- and 7-series dominating the market. Europe was followed by China, where NCM 8-series was the most commonly used chemistry, while the US took the third spot, with high-nickel NCA batteries leading the way.

The report also says that nearly 20% of all passenger EV battery capacity deployed globally in 2020 was in the form of low-nickel cells, such as NCM 1- to 5-series cells. 

“Last year, China saw the greatest deployment of low-nickel cells globally, followed closely by Europe and, at a distance, by the US. In virtually all regions globally, the low-nickel market is dominated by NCM 5-series and to a lesser extent NCM 1-series,” the document reads.

Adamas’ experts also say that, in 2020, less than 10% of all passenger EV battery capacity deployed across the world was in the form of no-nickel cells, such as lithium-iron-phosphate (LFP) and lithium-manganese oxide (LMO) or lithium-titanate (LTO) chemistries. 

In this case, China saw the greatest deployment of no-nickel cells globally in 2020, predominantly LFP, followed by Europe and the US.

“While LFP captured less than 10% of the passenger EV market last year by battery capacity deployed, it’s worth noting that this share reached as high as 11% in the fourth quarter of 2020 and we expect will edge closer to 15% by the middle of 2021,” the report states.

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