LG Chem to expand CNT production on optimistic battery demand

LG Chem’s first carbon nanotube plant in Yeosu, South Jeolla Province (LG Chem)

South Korean chemical company LG Chem said on Tuesday it was building its fourth carbon nanotube manufacturing plant to boost its responsiveness to rapidly growing global demand, especially for electric vehicle batteries.

Carbon nanotube, widely referred to as CNT, is considered a next-generation material that offers a level of electrical and thermal conductivity equivalent to that of copper and diamond, and has 100 times the strength of steel.

Demand for this material has recently increased as it is used as a conductive additive in electric vehicle batteries as well as in semiconductors, automotive parts and airframes. LG Chem is a key supplier to LG Energy Solution, the world’s second largest manufacturer of batteries for electric vehicles.

The new plant with an annual production capacity of 3,200 tonnes will be located at its existing production complex in Daesan, some 75 kilometers southwest of Seoul. This is CNT’s fourth plant in addition to the third whose production started at the beginning of this year.

Currently, the first and second plants together produce 1,700 tons of CNT per year. With the completion of the fourth plant in 2024, the company’s total production capacity is expected to reach 6,100 tons.

“LG Chem is continuously increasing its sales to newly secured battery customers, including LG Energy Solutions, and is firmly committed to becoming a world-class CNT supplier for global automakers,” said Noh Kug-lae, Head of the petrochemical activity of LG Chem.

By Lee Yoon-Seo ([email protected])