According to local media outlet LatePost on August 3, Chinese battery giant CATL will supply Tesla with M3P batteries in Q4 of this year, which will be installed in Model Y models with 72-degree battery packs. This version of the Model Y will be launched early next year.
The lithium manganese iron phosphate used in CATL’s M3P battery will be supplied by Dynanonic, a Shenzhen-based firm which plans to put 110,000 tons of lithium manganese iron phosphate into production in the second half of this year.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk said in March this year that he is optimistic about the technical scheme of applying manganese in batteries, and the company has been trying to use manganese in batteries for a while now. A source from Tesla said that lithium manganese iron phosphate batteries are also being researched within Tesla itself. Due to a long R&D cycle, Tesla will purchase these kind of batteries from suppliers first. After completing sample test, it usually takes only three months for Tesla to move from purchase to application.
Lithium manganese iron phosphate batteries are an improvement on lithium ferrophosphate battery, while the manganese element has been newly added.
The production pipeline for lithium manganese iron phosphate batteries can be divided into two types: one is to use 100% lithium manganese iron phosphate materials as positive electrodes, and the other is to mix in aluminum or magnesium and other materials into the lithium manganese iron phosphate as positive electrodes. The cathode material of CATL’s M3P battery consists of ternary lithium materials and lithium manganese iron phosphate materials. This scheme will help address problems of short life cycles and large internal resistance.
At present, BYD, Sunwoda, EVE Energy and other power battery manufacturers are laying out lithium manganese iron phosphate batteries with some of them already having started to send samples to car companies for testing. One of the technical directions of NIO‘s battery is lithium manganese iron phosphate, and its technical route is similar to CATL’s M3P battery.
The M3P battery is an important part of future passenger car solutions for CATL. Wu Kai, chief scientist at CATL, said at the World EV & ES Battery Conference last week that CATL will divide the new energy vehicle market into three segments with battery lifespans ranging from 300-500km to 700km to 1000km. In the second segment, the solution provided by CATL is the combination of an M3P battery cell and Kirin battery structure.