First and Last Mile Mobility Conclave: Battery replacement is a great option for a cost-effective country like India

The world is slowly realizing the importance of switching from non-renewable energy to renewable and green energy sources. The topic is very relevant today compared to a few decades ago, especially in the automotive industry, as stakeholders seek to switch from fossil fuels to electricity, where batteries are increasingly becoming a key part of the transition.

One of the most famous sources is the lithium-ion battery. As part of an expert technical session, Atul Arya, Head of Energy Systems, Panasonic India began his presentation by talking about the Japanese battery company’s journey since the days of Excel Dry Battery, a power lamp for bicycles to provide space critical missions.

“We entered the space of lithium-ion batteries in the 1960s. In the 90’s we started working with laptops and various other types of batteries. We are constantly innovating and Panasonic is one of the largest suppliers of batteries worldwide in the field of electric mobility. The company’s goal is to ensure the longest battery life, “Arya began.

He explained how the company is focusing on providing safe batteries for a variety of applications, from the smallest devices such as remote controls, electric bicycles, power tools to construction equipment, electric vehicles and data centers, among others.

“In India, we supply batteries to almost all electric car manufacturers. We guarantee

that there are no problems with energy supplies, “Arya added.

He explained that the six key priorities for each battery company, despite the importance of safety in lithium-ion cells, the issue has come to the fore now, especially given the EV fire incidents in the country.

“We are very proud to say that although we sell billions of cells and continue to do so,

we are always far from such incidents. And this is done through strict design and production

expertise. The second highest priority for a lithium-ion battery should always be reliability and, of course, it should be competitive. But on the other hand, most people usually try to put costs first, and then comes safety and reliability, ”Arya said.

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According to him, battery manufacturers must provide and design battery packs, taking into account factors such as overload, high temperature, physical damage, internal short circuits and excessive currents, among others. “These are the conditions that can essentially happen to any type of battery or cell. However, the manufacturers of cells and batteries must guarantee

that whenever there is overcharging or higher temperature, physical damage, they must be detected immediately. And the cell or battery must be protected from going out of this situation.

Nilesh Wadhwa, chief correspondent moderating a Financial Express session, asked Arya about his views on the argument between having a common standard for batteries / modular batteries or allowing OEMs to have their own USPs and standards. He said: “I am sure this will never be resolved unless we really go this way. I guess they both have their own place. ”

He mentioned that the global e-mobility industry is growing faster than one might expect. On the other hand, the price of batteries has not decreased as much as one would like. “Everyone is switching to electricity, including countries like India and China. There is an extremely high demand for batteries, which is also putting a lot of pressure on the supply chain. You can’t constantly extract lithium and cobalt and various other metals that weren’t needed so much before. Now they are required in quantities that no one has imagined. So in this sense, the replacement is a great option, as it takes away the price of the battery, which is complete with the price of

vehicles, especially in a country like ours, where we place a lot of emphasis on start-up costs. We are proud to be aware of the prices. ”

“But then what happens is that in order to comply with the price, we actually buy things of low quality, which in principle is not the right thing again. This raises a very question mark on the overall health of the industry. Therefore, in order to maintain the right kind of technical standards, I guess the change is a great solution, which is that it really takes the price of the battery and brings in the element of probably what we can call Battery as a Service (BaaS), ” Arya explained.

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