Capacity expansion for Hipore™ LIB separator
Asahi Kasei Corp.
Asahi Kasei will increase production capacity for Hipore™ Li-ion battery (LIB) separator* by 60 million m2/year at its plant in Moriyama, Shiga, Japan, with start-up scheduled in the first half of fiscal 2018.
With increasing demand for hybrid-electronic and all-electric vehicles worldwide, the LIB market is forecasted to grow substantially in automotive applications, in addition to applications for consumer electronics.
Asahi Kasei is the world’s leading LIB separator manufacturer, supplying both wet-process and dry-process separators with its Hipore™ and Celgard™ products. Hipore™ manufacturing plants are located in Moriyama, Shiga, and Hyuga, Miyazaki, Japan, while Celgard™ manufacturing plants are located in North Carolina, the US, and Chungbuk, Korea. The company’s LIB separator business is being proactively expanded as a strategic area of growth.
This capacity expansion of 60 million m2/y at its plant in Moriyama will further reinforce Asahi Kasei’s capability to provide stable supply to meet rising global demand for LIB separators. Upon completion of the new production line, the company’s total LIB separator capacity will increase to 610 million m2/year, with wet-process capacity being 410 million m2/y and dry-process capacity being 200 million m2/y.
Outline of the new Hipore™ capacity expansion
- Moriyama, Shiga, Japan
- 60 million m2/year
- ≈¥6 billion
- First half of fiscal 2018 (scheduled)
The battery separator business is positioned as a strategic area of focus in the Asahi Kasei Group’s Material business sector. To keep pace with the forecasted growth in demand for LIB separators, Asahi Kasei plans to raise its total LIB separator capacity to 1,100 million m2/y, including both wet process and dry process, by 2020. Asahi Kasei anticipates that capital investment for these expansions will total some ¥15 billion to ¥20 billion.