Sneak Peak: A Look at AABC Asia 2019

By Menahem Anderman

July 26, 2019 | It is now globally understood that China is leading the implementation of electric vehicles. It has also become evident that Chinese battery developers and battery materials suppliers are establishing themselves at the top of the supply chain, in competition with, mostly, their Japanese and Korean counterparts. Further, it is abundantly clear that the technological development needed to support vehicle electrification must keep pace with rising expectations: batteries with enhanced performance, durability, abuse tolerance, and lower cost are indeed crucial to the viability of each of the hybrid/electric-vehicle powertrains.

AABC was founded to review the status of automotive battery technology and provide informed glimpses into its future. We started in 2001 when 42V systems and Fuel-Cell vehicles were relatively ‘hot’; during the following 10 years, we covered the development of high-voltage HEV battery packs, initially with NiMH and later with Li Ion, and early EV- and PHEV-battery development. The first half of the current decade saw the arrival of compliance EVs and PHEVs, early market development in China and Europe, and the transition of HEV batteries to Li Ion. Since 2016, the focus has shifted to EV/PHEV market expansion, long-range EV packs, and, more recently, to fast charge, raw materials supply, and the exploration of battery technologies beyond Li Ion.

The program of AABC Asia 2019 will uncover the underlying technical and business issues that will impact the pace and path of vehicle electrification worldwide. It includes a materials-focused track, an engineering-focused track, and a track dedicated to product technology and market. It is clear that the lithium-ion battery is the number one candidate for most xEV applications and yet, for each of them, some fundamental questions remain:

  • What are their specific anode, cathode, and electrolyte chemistries?
  • Which cell design?
  • Which pack design?
  • Which suppliers?
  • At what cost?
  • In what volume for each category?

These questions will be addressed at AABC Asia 2019, where chief battery technologists will present their development trends and projected battery needs, and key suppliers will present their latest offerings and roadmaps for the future.

A major feature of AABC, the plenary session gathers international experts to review materials, battery, and vehicle sales growth and discuss the various stages of the process illustrated in the diagram below. Advances in materials development lead to better cell technology, which in turn supports better battery-pack technology. Vehicle architecture is where technology, market, and governmental policies ‘meet’ to provide the most effective solutions to the customers’ needs. Vehicle sales create the xEV market, which in turn supports the battery and battery-materials market.

To hear more, join us at AABC Asia 2019, October 28 to 31, in Tokyo.