A Korean group producing lithium-ion batteries has awarded the contract for the supply of vacuum systems to global technology group Oerlikon Leybold Vacuum. The company will equip several production lines, with delivery of these systems for electrode drying expected before the end of this year.
With a system combination of the dry compressing screw vacuum pump, DRYVAC DV 450C, and the proven Roots RUVAC WH2500, the customer will optimise its production lines. Decisive factors for awarding the contract were in particular the superior process capability at low operating costs and the services offered.
"Moreover, the smooth, interactive communication between customer, sales and application support showed our commitment," says Oerlikon Leybold Vacuum Korea sales head HY Moon.
In the manufacturing of battery cells, vacuum technology is used in several production steps and is integral to the efficiency of production, notes the company. During their entire life cycle, batteries need to maintain a high quality; therefore, high-performance vacuum systems are necessary in order to provide the conditions for high-quality batteries, for example, in specified drying processes.
Specifically, with lithium cells for electric vehicles, these quality requirements are increasingly important, as the demands for volumetric storage capacity, light weight and safety are growing. Apart from electrode drying, the vacuum-assisted manufacturing steps comprise cell assembly and leak detection testing.
The company notes it expects further business transactions in the current year. "With this order, we position ourselves clearly in the fast-growing, attractive business field of modern energy storage for electric mobility," says Oerlikon Leybold Vacuum CEO Dr Martin Füllenbach.
He adds that the business potential for the current year is positive, especially since the market for lithium-ion batteries is generally expected to grow at sustainable rates during the next three years.
With its extensive process and application knowledge, Oerlikon Leybold Vacuum will contribute to improved production concepts. The company will do so in order to make the lithium-ion batteries more attractive for mass-market applications, owing to a greater range per charge cycle and lower production costs.