HiPurA High Purity Alumina (HPA)
The HiPurA™ Process is a unique process technology that is able to produce high purity alumina (HPA) and high purity alumina cathode precursor salts for lithium ion batteries. The process is low in energy consumption compared to alternative technologies and isn’t tied to any mine production allowing for a quick construction time.
High Purity Alumina has a very large and growing market, with uses in a broad range of products. The key areas of growth are:
Lithium ion batteries:
The production of synthetic sapphire for use in:
The fastest growing market for HPA is in Lithium Ion batteries. The main use for HPA in Li batteries is in the coating of the separator between the anode and the cathode. Coating separators with HPA has been found to significantly improve safety and efficiency:
- provides greater thermal stability to the battery, reducing the risk of batteries catching fire
- significantly improves impedance (Macmullan number <3) allowing for high power capability,
- improves battery life cycle and lowers self-discharge
The larger the battery, the greater the importance of thermal management becomes. This is very important when used in Electic Vehicles (EV’s) as battery safety is vital in ensuring vehicle safety.
There is also research going into the use of HPA in both the anode and cathode to enhance stability and performance of the battery.
Forecasts for the growth in the sale of EV’s is extremely positive. In a report published by Bloomberg New Energy Finance, they are forecasting that up to 55% of total new car sales in 2040 will be EV’s, meaning that in excess of 50 million EV’s will be produced.
Synthetic sapphire is becoming more widely used in many developing new technologies. It is well established in LED and semiconductor markets and is increasingly used in optical and medical devices require the unique properties offered by sapphire.