Lithium moves the world
The importance of lithium
Lithium is the lightest of all metals, but it is also the most energy-dense, making it the ideal material for use in batteries and other technologies.
Lithium and its derivatives constitute a key input for the development of electromobility and the technologies that move the world; it is also very important for the pharmaceutical industry and for industrial uses.
Uses of lithium
It is especially used in heat conductive alloys, in electric batteries and their salts, as well as in the treatment of bipolar disorder.
Lithium batteries power our phones, tablets, and cars, among many other devices in everyday use.
Automotive market and electromobility
The electric vehicle market has been gaining more and more relevance compared to internal combustion engines, invented in 1859, which generate high levels of environmental pollution.
Over the next few years, sustained growth is expected: by 2040, the sale of electric cars is expected to reach 60 million units, which favors the expectations of the International Energy Agency, which estimates that, to meet the objectives of the Paris Accords, at least 40% of vehicle sales must be from electric models.
The trend indicates that use of internal combustion cars will decrease considerably in the next 20 years, from Europe to India, the United Kingdom and, of course, China, the world’s largest car market.
Adoption is being driven by the implementation of a range of government subsidies and incentives.
Furthermore, consumers are increasingly motivated to participate in the reduction of global greenhouse gas emissions and have gradually adopted the different options that the market provides.
Another relevant factor is the new technological generation of advanced batteries, which will allow greater autonomy. Most major original equipment manufacturers have announced self-driving fleet development coming soon.
In the next few years, large automobile manufacturers will develop different types of electric vehicles intensively, mainly for the following reasons:
They protect the environment
The electric car does not need internal combustion to function, therefore, it does not emit harmful gases or polluting particles that increase global warming and affect the health of living beings.
The International Energy Agency estimates that to meet the climate objectives of the Paris Accords, at least 40% of vehicle sales must be from electric models.
They do not generate noise pollution
Electric motors are less noisy than combustion ones, improving driving comfort.
Additionally, they reduce noise pollution, one of the causes of hearing loss suffered by more than 360 million people worldwide, of whom 32 million are children.
They are more efficient
The cost per kilometer of electric cars is substantially less than that of combustion engine cars.
Although the performance depends on the model, the final value of the energy consumption of an electric motor is less than that of a gasoline or diesel model; this constitutes an advantage, considering the significant amount that a driver spends on gasoline.
They offer driving comfort
Electric cars do not have a gear transmission system, since their engine works thanks to a single gear that advances speed progressively, similar to automatic vehicles. This gives comfort and simplicity to driving.
Low-lying battery placement lowers the center of gravity – giving the car more stability and less chance of tipping.
As it is necessary to provide additional protection to the car where the batteries are located, this allows a much better side impact resistance than traditional models.
They require little maintenance
Traditional combustion engines consist of hundreds of parts, which, if not replaced before the end of their useful life, can be subject to considerable damage.
The electric motor is made up of fewer parts and this translates to much lower maintenance costs.
The public’s commitment to caring for the planet has given greater value to the purchase of electric vehicles by drivers. Those who acquire them are motivated by an environmental conscience, the protection of their safety and their economy.
In this context, in Latin America several manufacturers have entered this market with quality cars, so it is to be expected that in the not too distant future they will begin to have a preponderance in the Chilean automotive fleet.