Ternary Lithium Batteries & Lithium Iron Phosphate Batteries – Comparison & Prospects

With the increasing application of new energy vehicles, lithium battery technology in vehicles is becoming more and more important. At this stage, the power battery selected for new energy vehicles is mainly ternary lithium battery and lithium iron phosphate battery type. They differ in durability, safety, and cost. Next, we will compare and analyze the characteristics of ternary lithium batteries and lithium iron phosphate batteries from multiple perspectives to help you understand more comprehensively.

Structural perspective of a new energy vehicle, with lithium batteries highlighted
Basic Composition of Ternary Lithium Battery & Lithium Iron Phosphate Battery

Ternary lithium batteries generally refer to ternary polymer lithium batteries, whose anode materials are mainly made of nickel-cobalt manganese oxide (NCM) or nickel-cobalt aluminum oxide (NCA), while the cathode materials are made of carbon (graphite). Lithium iron phosphate battery uses lithium iron phosphate (LiFePO4) as the anode material and carbon (graphite) as the cathode material.

In the process of preparing lithium iron phosphate anode material, it needs to be sintered at high temperature to improve the performance and stability of the battery. And graphitized graphite sagger as the carrier of sintered lithium iron phosphate material mainly has the following advantages:

  • Excellent sintering performance. Graphitized graphite sagger can safely carry out the sintering process of lithium iron phosphate at high temperatures, resulting in uniform distribution, high density, and fine grain size, thus improving battery performance.
  • High temperature stability. Graphitized graphite sagger has high strength and heat resistance, and can safely withstand the pressure of high temperature sintering process, to ensure the stable production of lithium iron phosphate battery anode material.
  • Safe & environmentally friendly. Graphitized graphite sagger does not contain any harmful chemicals to the environment and human body, so the use of graphite sagger sintering anode material is more in line with environmental requirements and human health.

In addition, graphitized graphite sagger also has a wide range of applications in high temperature carbonization and graphitization of cathode materials. Thanks to the high strength, heat resistance performance, and excellent thermal conductivity of the graphitized graphite sagger, it can evenly distribute the heat during the high temperature carbonization and graphitization of cathode materials to ensure the stability of the high temperature carbonization and graphitization process of cathode materials, so that the materials can get balanced carbonization at high temperatures and be further graphitized and purified to enhance the performance of the battery.

Structure of 2 types of lithium-ion batteries demonstrated
Comparison Between Lithium Ternary Battery & Lithium Iron Phosphate Battery
Table 1: Comparison Between Lithium Ternary Battery & Lithium Iron Phosphate Battery
Item Lithium Ternary Battery Lithium Iron Phosphate Battery
Safety Self-Combustion There is a high risk of spontaneous combustion, which may cause a fire or even an explosion in the event of thermal runaway. Have a lower risk of spontaneous combustion and are less prone to similar problems.
Overcharge Protection The overcharge protection function needs to be upgraded, and is prone to overcharging. The overcharge protection function is superior and can effectively inhibit the occurrence of overcharge.
Short Circuit Protection Weak short-circuit protection makes it easy to generate short circuits. Excellent short-circuit protection prevents short circuits.
Pin Prick Test According to the results of the pin prick test, it is prone to problems such as liquid leakage. According to the results of the pin prick test, it performs well in this aspect and can effectively avoid problems such as liquid leakage.
Performance Energy Density Higher energy density provides higher voltage and longer range. Slightly lower energy density, but with better safety, less prone to thermal runaway and other safety incidents.
Charging Rate Its charging and discharging rate is fast and the charging process can be completed in a short time. Its charging and discharging rate is relatively slow and take a long time to complete the charging process.
Cycle Life Cycle life is relatively short, around 200–500 cycles. Cycle life is much longer, up to 1,000 cycles or more.
Temperature Resistance Discharged at -20 °C, its capacity retention rate can reach more than 70%; however, it will decompose at a high temperature of 200 °C. Discharge at -20 °C, its capacity retention rate is only about 60%, and its high temperature decomposition temperature is 800 °C.
Service Life Battery Service Life Its service life is relatively short, about 2–3 years. With longer service life – more than 5 years.
Maintenance Cost Maintenance costs are high, requiring regular replacement of battery cells and other parts. Maintenance costs are lower and do not require frequent replacement of parts.

In summary, ternary lithium batteries and lithium iron phosphate batteries have their advantages and disadvantages, but from an overall comparison, lithium iron phosphate batteries are better.

Development Prospects of Lithium Iron Phosphate Battery

With the improvement of the battery pack structure development technology, the lithium iron phosphate group energy density has reached the ternary NCM523 level and is continuing to improve. Compared with ternary lithium batteries, lithium iron phosphate raw materials are cheap, safe, and reliable, longer life, so quite a competitive advantage. Many battery manufacturers are confident that lithium iron phosphate batteries will dominate the prospects for a larger market. Once on the real market, lithium iron phosphate batteries in passenger cars, commercial vehicles, and special purpose vehicles in the field of low-cost, long life, high-security advantages will be fully reflected.