What is Ternary Lithium Battery Often Mentioned in Electric Vehicles?

People who buy electric cars have heard of the name of the ternary lithium battery, which is commonly used by BYD and Tesla. So, why the battery called ternary lithium battery? What the ternary refer to? What is the relationship between the three elements? Today we will answer these questions.

Why called  ternary lithium battery?

The full name of ternary lithium battery is “lithium ion secondary battery using ternary polymer such as nickel cobalt manganese lithium or nickel cobalt aluminum aluminate as the positive electrode material”. The ternary refers to nickel (Ni), cobalt (Co) ), manganese (Mn) or aluminum (Al) three metal element polymers, used as the positive electrode in the ternary lithium battery; lithium refers to the electrolyte mainly composed of lithium hexafluoro phosphate, and the negative electrode material is generally graphite.

The naming of batteries

There are two common names:

  • 1 Named after the most important element in the battery.
  • 2 Named after the core reaction mechanism or characteristics of the battery, such as a flexible battery that emphasizes foldable characteristics.

Since the cathode material in lithium batteries determines its energy density, this is the most important feature for lithium batteries. So the name of the cathode material is the most common. Thus we often say that ternary lithium batteries, lithium iron phosphate Batteries fall into this category.

What is the relationship between these elements?

The reason why ternary lithium has been promoted is of course not only because of the easy remembered the name, but also because the polymer of the three metal elements of nickel, cobalt and manganese (or aluminum) plays a huge role inside the battery. So, what role do these three metal elements play?


Nickel is an active metal in the subgroup. Its main function is to increase the volumetric energy density of the battery. It is the main breakthrough to increase the mileage range. However, excessive content will cause nickel ions to occupy the position of lithium ions (mixed nickel-hydrogen), resulting in a decrease in capacity.

2. Cobalt

Cobalt is also an active metal in the subgroup, which can inhibit the mixing of cations, thereby enhancing the stability and prolonging the life of the battery. In addition, it also determines the charge and discharge speed and efficiency (rate performance) of the battery. However, an excessively high cobalt content will cause the actual capacity to decrease.

3. Manganese or Aluminum

The role of manganese or aluminum is to reduce the cost of materials. After all, the nickel and cobalt mentioned above are very expensive rare metals, and can improve the safety and stability of the battery.

manganese or aluminum

In the cathode materials of ternary lithium batteries, the three metal elements of nickel, cobalt, and manganese (or aluminum) are indispensable. One more or less one will affect the final performance or fail to make a battery, but we can make it according to our own needs. , Properly adjust the mixing ratio (molar ratio) of nickel, cobalt, and manganese (or aluminum) in the lithium battery to make the lithium battery show different characteristics.

How to mix them to get a higher mileage?

Nickel is the element that determines the energy density of the ternary lithium battery. If you want to go further, increase the content. Also if you want the ternary lithium battery to be cheaper, just increase the ratio of manganese to aluminum.

According to the different mixing ratios of the three elements of nickel, cobalt, manganese (or aluminum) in the cathode material, we can divide the ternary lithium battery into different systems:

Such as nickel: cobalt: manganese ratio: 1:1:1 the 333 system.

Or 8:1:1 high nickel 811 system, etc.

A brief summary is that the higher of the first number, the farther you run, but the higher of the cost, the lower of the safety. Furthermore the higher of the last number, the shorter of the mileage, and the cheaper of the cost.

If you want to get a further and safer mileage, it is necessary to increase the ratio of nickel and cobalt in the ternary material. However, you must also bear the safety hazards caused by the active nickel chemistry and the high cost of cobalt rare metals. You can not have it both ways.

Safety is an important issue which cannot be ignored, but fortunately there are lithium iron phosphate batteries. It has higher security, of course, this is also proportional to the price. OSM energy focuses on cost-effective and safe lithium iron phosphate batteries,if you want to find high quality battery, OSM will be a reliable choice.

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