South Korean battery materials producer EcoPro BM revealed it was in discussions with an unnamed local automaker for the supply of cathode materials for sodium based electric vehicle (EV) batteries.

Sodium based batteries are seen as a potential low cost alternative to lithium ion and lithium iron phosphate batteries widely used in EVs today.

EcoPro BM, a producer of cathode materials for local battery manufacturers Samsung SDI, LG Energy Solution and SK On, said it recently began discussions with a local carmaker on the use of sodium ion batteries.

Speaking on the sidelines of the InterBattery Europe 2024 conference in Munich, Germany this week, EcoPro BM chief technology officer Lee Dongwook said his company had been developing sodium ion related technology for two years. He said it had reached the “the completion stages in the development of sodium based cathode materials” and was ready for production, adding they were now actively exploring market opportunities.

Lee said EcoPro BM can produce sodium based cathode materials with the same production facilities it uses for lithium ion cathodes.

China’s Contemporary Amperex Technology Company (CATL), the world’s top EV battery manufacturer, currently produces sodium ion batteries for EVs made by local automakers such as Chery Automobiles.

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