The market for civilian drones is growing, but battery life remains to be seen
In June, 1,400 drones staged a spectacular visual feast in the ancient city of chang 'an. In September, the show of 800 unmanned aerial vehicles (uavs) brought strong support to a game activity, and aerial photography of uavs was carried out among young players to popularize education. Since the beginning of this year, the number of uavs in public view has increased significantly. Nowadays, unmanned aerial vehicles (uavs), "flying cameras", have quietly become popular among young people. However, you'd be wrong to think that these are the only civilian drones that can do this. With the rapid progress of technology and the large data, the depth of the mobile Internet and other information technology integration, unmanned aerial vehicle (uav) as an information collector has deeply penetrated into all fields of people's life, in electric power, communications, meteorology, agriculture and forestry, Marine, film and television, law enforcement, rescue, express, and other fields has been widely used, and in many areas has showed very good technical effect and economic benefits.
In the spring, the demand for batteries in the civil uav market will explode
Statistics show that in 2017, China's civil uav shipments have reached 2.96 million, accounting for 77 percent of the global market. China is expected to ship 8.34 million civilian drones by 2020. Globally, shipments will exceed 10 million.
On the other hand, the government also supports the development of the civil uav market. According to the guideline issued by the ministry of industry and information technology on promoting and standardizing the development of civil uav manufacturing industry, China's civil uav industry output value will reach 60 billion yuan by 2020. By 2025, the output value of civil uav will reach 180 billion yuan, with an annual growth rate of more than 25%. To regulate civil uav industry development, on November 23, compiled the ministry also released the conditions of unmanned aerial vehicle (uav) manufacturers specification (draft) ", is intended to speed up cultivating superior enterprises, improving the quality of industrial development, hope our country civilian uavs in industry scale, technical level and continue maintaining the momentum of international leading enterprise strength. International media reported that the international organization for standardization (ISO) recently released the world's first draft of standards for the use of unmanned aerial vehicles (uavs), which will be solicited from the public before January 21, and is expected to be included in the ISO standard system later next year. All these indicate that the uav market is entering a period of development opportunities.
Compared with traditional batteries, li-polymer batteries have become the standard equipment for civil uav almost due to their advantages of light weight and high discharge rate. Some agencies predict that by 2020, the uav market will require more than 1GWh of power battery, which is expected to reach 1. 25GWh, or one of the fastest growing industries in polymer lithium battery applications. Peter Bunce, President of the general aviation manufacturers association (GAMA), also said in an interview with battery China that power batteries have shown their superiority in the field of small aircraft, such as small unmanned aerial vehicles (uavs).
The short duration is a major pain point for the uav
In recent years, the price of uav components such as lithium battery has been dropping continuously, which has reduced the overall cost of uav and played an important role in promoting the rapid development and promotion of the civil uav industry. However, it is undeniable that the short battery life of uav lithium battery is still a shortcoming that restricts the development of uav industry, and it is also a technical problem that needs to be solved urgently in the development of uav all over the world.
"On the market at present the mainstream consumer endurance uavs, generally within 30 minutes, mainly considering the battery capacity and battery weight balance," big xinjiang innovation technology co., LTD., a former employee to battery China further explained, "increasing the weight of battery capacity, nature also increases, will affect the uav flight speed and battery life. Battery capacity and weight is a trade-off.
That is to say, the current mainstream consumer drones, more than half an hour does not come back, because the power consumption will crash. Of course, in order to prevent this from happening, civil uav enterprises will carry out corresponding system alarm setting and training guidance, but this is not a satisfactory final solution.
Wind, altitude, temperature, flight style and energy consumption of information-gathering hardware are among the factors that could shorten the duration of a drone's flight. For example, the duration of the uav in windy weather will be shorter than usual; If the uav flies vigorously, the endurance time will be greatly shortened.
The market for professional uavs with improved endurance has great potential
According to the data, global civil uav shipments in 2017 were 3.83 million, an increase of 60 percent year on year. Among them, the shipment volume of consumer uav reached 3.45 million, accounting for more than 90%, and the market share of professional uav was less than 10%. If consumer unmanned aerial vehicle (uav) with high altitude, extreme sports shooting aerial and aerial view from the extended to the customer groups such as the public, along with the advance of technology and the cost of hardware, such as lithium battery, falling, professional unmanned aerial vehicle (uav) in electric power inspection, film and television play shot, logistics, express, oil pipeline query, application, communication, meteorological environmental monitoring, agriculture and forestry operations, remote sensing mapping in areas such as market value will also be gradually digging, large-scale promotion and will be used. At that time, the civilian uav lithium battery demand prospect is also very considerable. But at the same time, the professional uav will put forward higher requirements on battery life, load and stability.
How far the drone wants to fly depends on the battery. A big pain point for electric cars is range, but still measured in the hundreds of kilometers. Now that we mention that civilian drones are still at the endurance level, we can see that the difference between the two is quite obvious.
Some industry analysts believe that due to the requirements of civil uav, especially professional uav on the energy density, lightweight and multiplier performance of lithium battery and other indicators are significantly higher than other application fields, technical barriers are relatively high. Therefore, domestic enterprises that can provide high-end uav with lithium battery are significantly less than those in other application fields. At present, there are only some ternary soft-pack battery enterprises in China, such as yiwei lithium energy, ATL, guangyu and grepp, which have layout in this field.
The next generation of high-energy density batteries is expected to be a priority in the drone industry
According to the development trend of uav battery technology, lithium battery with high energy density and high safety will become the mainstream in the future. According to battery China, SION POWER, a foreign company, applied lithium sulfur battery with high energy density to large uav in 2010, and set three world flying records of uav, such as the highest flying altitude, the longest time in the air and the lowest working temperature. At present, lithium ion batteries cannot make drones stay in the air for a long time in the high altitude and low temperature environment. Domestically, through cooperation with IMRE, a professional research institute in Singapore, mengshi technology is currently testing and applying lithium sulfur battery samples in uav. Recently, China's first li-sulfur battery large-wingspan uav developed by Chen jian's team of dalian institute of chemical compounds of the Chinese academy of sciences also achieved the first flight success, marking an important step forward in the practical application of li-sulfur battery in China. It is believed that solid-state batteries, the next generation battery technology that attracts the most attention at present, are also expected to be the first to be applied commercially in the field of uav.
The wide application of power batteries in the field of new energy vehicles has accelerated the transformation of the automobile industry. Global automobile giants and governments are vigorously promoting the strategy of electrification of vehicles. Similarly, as an important carrier of the energy revolution, battery has immeasurable potential in the field of aviation. Let's wait and see.