How Does JPT Manage to Cooperate with Several Power Battery Leaders?
A forecast of SNE research predicts an increase in demand for power batteries for new energy vehicles as it reaches 406GWh and the supply at 335GWh by 2023, with a gap of approximately 18%. It’s also expected that the power batteries’ supply gap will extend further to 40% by 2025 amid a looming new round of expansion in production set to come soon.
MOPA laser becomes the best solution, replacing the traditional process
Lithium batteries are the power engine of new-energy vehicles; thus, their quality directly affects prime indicators such as driving safety and cruising range. Due to the complex and several production processes involving lithium batteries, these products tend to be more susceptible to defects like exposed foils, wrinkles, scratches, dark spots, bubbles, material loss in battery materials, and PACK packaging. Such defects significantly affect the quality and performance of lithium battery products, which is why the processing puts more focus on the quality, accuracy, and controllability of the production equipment.
One of the most vital processes in the lithium-ion battery production process is electrode cutting. This traditional method primarily adopts the die-cutting process, which is often inefficient due to how it requires constant replacement, thus affecting continuous production. There’s also the die-stamping process, though it only induces mechanical stress to pole pieces, resulting in a series of problems such as whitening or burrs, including safety hazards such as battery explosion or overheating.
In contrast, the laser processing method has easy-to-achieve equipment automation, good process stability, diverse and flexible processing graphics, and high production efficiency. With plenty of advantages in performance, laser processing technology has become widely utilized in the production process of lithium batteries. This process currently covers the front-end production, back-end module pack packaging, and middle-stage welding of the lithium battery production line. Most importantly, it has paved a new way for the processing of lithium batteries while accelerating performance and quality, making it more sought-after by downstream manufacturers.
There are many kinds of lasers on the market at present, and the effects of different lithium battery processes vary from one another. Because of this, selecting the optimal laser solution to integrate with a specific process is essential. For instance, in cutting lithium battery pole pieces, the negative electrode material is copper foil, while the positive material is aluminum foil. The dust and burrs generated during the entire process will consequently affect the safety and self-discharge performance of the battery, with its efficiency affecting the manufacturing cost. That said, many factors need to be taken into consideration when making a selection.
The laser’s pulse width is the core factor that affects slice quality – from the processing effect of various lasers to the cutting of lithium battery pole pieces. High repetition rate picosecond lasers are suitable for cutting copper and aluminum foils, though this technology is still not mature in practical industrial applications. It’s also extremely expensive and may not apply to large-scale production processes. 532nm and 355nm solid-state lasers are usually insignificant in practical industrial applications due to the unstable beam mode and the uncertainty of cutting quality results.
The 1064nm MOP laser, however, has a high repetition frequency and relatively narrow pulse that takes cutting speed and quality into account. Furthermore, the cost is also competitive and more affordable for many, making it the best solution for lithium battery pole piece cutting to date.
Accelerating technological innovation and overcoming problems in lithium battery processing
China’s market for new energy vehicles has started to show a rapid trend in growth since 2011, propelling further growth in lithium battery demand. However, China’s lack of high-powered lasers has prompted foreign brands to monopolize the lasers of power batteries’ core process equipment for a long time.
Since 2007, JPT’s MOPA development project has pioneered the country’s domestic commercial MOPA pulsed fiber lasers. After many years of rigorous research, development, and constant upgrading of design solutions, JPT seized the initiative in mass-producing MOPA pulsed fiber lasers in China. Currently, JPT MOPA laser sales are among the leading companies in the world, breaking the market monopoly of foreign brands and manufacturers altogether.
In response to the increasing demand for lithium battery pole-piece cutting applications, JPT has performed plenty of research in the quality of laser processing alongside the processing efficiency of lithium battery cathode, anode coating materials, aluminum and copper foil based on its accumulated years of experience developing MOPA lasers.
The frequency and pulse width of these products produce high and stable beam quality output, high energy conversion efficiency, and higher processing efficiency, and can stay on par with the speed of the production line up to 150m/min while being independently controllable. It also has a fast power and frequency conversion at less than 10μs, with a better processing effect overall.
The MOPA-FC-200W, for instance, has once again improved in burr control which is the main core of battery pole piece cutting, thus improving the quality of pole piece processing and cutting efficiency. In recent years, Chinese fiber laser manufacturers have developed rapidly and impacted foreign manufacturers in terms of products and technology. In the field of lithium battery processing, China’s laser products have become increasingly popular due to reduced costs and significant increases in the capacity of production. The Chinese manufacturers that JPT represents are continuously accelerating Chinese MOPA laser innovation to meet the varying needs of downstream clients.
Leading manufacturers facilitate substitution and localization process
Unlike other applications, lithium battery processing possesses a higher degree of automation and comes with stricter requirements regarding lasers’ automation level, stability, and equipment. This is also an essential reason why many Chinese manufacturers couldn’t cut in the past. However, the constant improvement of China’s laser industry chain has allowed lithium battery processing to become a vital market for laser companies in the country.
Following the industry positioning of “laser light source +,” JPT has been investing in and cultivating the technology of laser light sources. By supporting manufacturers of mainstream laser equipment, JPT has successfully broken into the supply chain of several leading power battery companies while achieving mass production in manufacturing. At this point, JPT sits in a long-term stable application with its MOPA lasers.
The MOPA pulsed fiber laser products for pole piece cutting have been launched and verified in CATL, a leading power battery manufacturer in China. It produces a better processing effect as opposed to imported lasers and can replace identical foreign products.
Besides pulsed fiber lasers, JPT products also include solid-state lasers, ultrafast lasers, and continuous wave fiber lasers alongside a wide range of laser products for power battery manufacturing, offering complete and efficient solutions for end customers.