SK Innovation to expand planned lithium-ion battery separator production capacity in Poland

by John Shepherd
Separator produced at SKIET's Jeungpyeong facility, South Korea. Photo: SKIET
SK Innovation has announced plans to more than triple planned production capacity at its lithium-ion battery separator facility in Poland, which is under construction by its SK IE Technology (SKIET) subsidiary.

An additional separator production line, with an annual capacity of 340 million sq metres, will increase the scale of production at the facility, in Poland’s Silesia province, from the currently planned 530 million sq/m to 1,870 million sq/m by the first quarter of 2023.

The company did not disclose investment costs, but SK Innovation CEO and president, Rho Jae-Sok, said the move was part of plans to strengthen its "technology competitiveness” by establishing global bases of production.

SKIET said it "aims to solidify its world No.1 position in the wet separator market, with a market share of about 30% in 2025… while increasing production capacity faster than the market growth rate by securing global production bases” in Poland, China and elsewhere.

'Sequential launches'

The first phase of operations in China are set to start towards the end of this year. The Poland plant is scheduled for completion in 2021. 

SKIET already has a separator production line in South Korea that has an annual production capacity of 530 million sq/m. The new plants under construction in Poland and China are being "launched sequentially, and production capacity will be about 1,370 million sq/m by the end of next year”, SKIET said.

The company can currently manufacture separators with a thickness of 4 micrometres. "The durability is significantly increased by ceramic coated separator (CCS) technology, which reduces the risk of fire by preventing deformation or contraction of the separator as much as possible, despite the heat emitted from large batteries.”

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