Samsung SDI is trying to manufacture low-cobalt batteries or even cobalt-less batteries for electric vehicles (EVs) amid surging prices for the specific metal.
Cobalt is used in lithium-ion batteries. Currently, Samsung employs nickel-cobalt-manganese and nickel-cobalt-aluminum technologies for EV batteries. But the company has raised the proportion of nickel in both batteries to above 90 percent, with that of cobalt at 5 percent. The firm is now moving to take out cobalt from both technologies.
The resaon behind Samsung's decision is the fact that Cobalt's price has increased by 235 percent last year, due to the Democratic Republic of Congo government's tax hike on the metal. The Central African country, which holds 60 percent of the world's cobalt resources.
The company is also considering recycling worn-out lithium batteries, which means pulling out cobalt and other key components.