Lithium carbonate is an inorganic compound used in the processing of various metal oxides. Besides, lithium carbonate is also listed in the World Health Organization’s list of Essential medicines for the treatment of bipolar disorder. Of the total lithium mineral global reserves Chile and China together account over 65% of the share. The global lithium carbonate production is expected to cross 250 kilotons in 2019 and reach around 450 kilotons in the upcoming years. Most of the lithium carbonate is used for the manufacturing of lithium batteries, followed by use in glass & ceramics, pharmaceuticals and others.
Lithium Carbonate Market: Dynamics
The lithium carbonate is the main precursor for many products. Lithium metal recovered for the use in batteries is also derived from lithium carbonate. According to one of the estimates, one tesla car battery uses 45 kg of lithium carbonate. The average price of battery grade lithium carbonate was estimated to be $ US 17,000 per metric ton in 2018. Lithium carbonate is extensively used in glass & ceramic industry. The glass derived from lithium carbonate is used in ovenware. Lithium carbonate forms low melting fluxes with silica and other materials to be used in ceramics. Cement industry uses lithium carbonate to enhance the setting property of cement and use it as tile adhesive. Lithium carbonate is very commonly used in ceramic glazes. Lithium carbonate when treated with aluminum trifluoride produces LiF (Lithium Fluoride), which is used as high grade electrolyte for the processing of aluminum.
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Lithium carbonate is widely used as an essential medicine for treatment of bipolar disorder and is recommended by World Health Organization (WHO) for the same. It is also medically used as an inhibitor of protein kinase C (PKC) in brain, as irregular release of PKC leads to mania, which is an elevated version of bipolar disorder. The derivatives of lithium carbonate, such as lithium bromide, are used in air conditioning as a salt for absorption chilling. Lithium carbonate is also used for the manufacturing of lubricant grease. The lithium-based grease have good thermal stability and water resistance properties. Lithium carbonate is used to manufacture welding electrodes as well.
The key restraint for the global market are over production of lithium carbonate, which are resulting in reduction in prices and development in technologies to derive lithium from alternative sources at a relatively less cost. The new developments in lubricants grease is expected to further increase the demand from this (lubricant) industry. The demand for lithium carbonate is expected to increase from cement industry and tile industry due to its increasing applications in tile adhesives. The demand for the production of lithium carbonate is forecast to increase globally as there are collective actions being taken to decrease reliability on fossil fuels.
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Lithium Carbonate Market: Segments
On the basis of grades, the market is segmented into:
- Technical/industrial grade
- Battery grade
- Pharmaceutical grade
On the basis of end-use industry, the market is classified as:
- Air treatment
- Glass & Ceramics
- Steel and iron casting
On the basis of geographic regions, the market for lithium carbonate is segmented as:
- North America
- Latin America
- East Asia
- South East Asia
- Middle East & Africa
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Lithium Carbonate: Regional Outlook
Lithium carbonate is manufactured all over the globe. Mining operations are constantly on the rise to produce lithium carbonate to meet global demands mainly for the production of lithium ion batteries. There is a significant increase in the production of electric vehicles that use lithium ion batteries. According to a report, around 1.5 million tons equivalent of Lithium carbonate is required to make existing lithium ion batteries. Chile, China and Australia are dominant manufacturers of lithium carbonate. However, about 45% of globally-produced lithium carbonate will solely be consumed by China alone in the upcoming years for the production of lithium batteries. The production of electric vehicles is forecast to drive the global lithium carbonate market. Of the total lubricants market, around 75% lubricants are lithium based.
Lithium Carbonate: Key Players
There are many key players in lithium carbonate market, including:
- Orocobre limited
- Simbol Materials
- European Lithium Ltd.
- Sichuan Tianqi Lithium Industries
- Qinghai Salt Lake Industry Co Ltd
- Tibet Mineral Development Co Ltd
- Western Mining Co Ltd
- Felmica – Minerais Industriais, S.A.
- CBL (Companhia Brasileira de Lítio,Brazil
- Livent Lithium
- FMC Corporation
The research report presents a comprehensive assessment of the Lithium Carbonate market and contains thoughtful insights, facts, historical data and statistically supported and industry-validated market data. It also contains projections using a suitable set of assumptions and methodologies. The Lithium Carbonate market report provides analysis and information, according to market segments such as geographies, application and industry.
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