Electric cars: myths and truths of the automotive industry transformation drive

OCTOBER 24, 2021

In today's economic climate, it is quite common to hear about globalization, innovation and Industry 4.0. In order for the market to maintain its competitive edge, suppliers are needed who not only understand these concepts, but also take a leading role in the respective areas of expertise.

The automotive industry is a concrete example of how the business model is changing radically to meet lofty global environmental targets. The main trend is the reduction of vehicle weight through new multi-material enabled designs. The other factor is sustainable mobility associated with the use of electric or hybrid energy. Partial or full electric drive vehicles rely on high-voltage rechargeable batteries to store and supply energy.

Xiaomi will produce its own cars by 2024.

Xiaomi to produce its own cars by 2024

According to the International Energy Agency (IEA), electric car sales soared 41% globally in 2020 despite the pandemic-driven downturn in the sector and Europe overtook China as the top market. By 2020, there were just over ten million electric cars worldwide, which prevented the emission of some 50 million tons of CO2. And the trend indicates sustained growth. In Argentina, 2,383 electric vehicles were patented in 2020 compared to 1,584 in 2019, representing an improvement of 53.9% in the year-on-year comparison.

The requirements of an automobile - performance, function and serviceability - must be considered in production. The right combination of technologies can thus influence the assembly process. Some challenges in the production of electric vehicles:

Cell-to-cell bonding with rivet solutions 2.

The batteries of the electric car are the most important and, at the same time, vulnerable parts of the car, prone to damage in case of an accident. Therefore, they need to be reinforced to reduce the risk of damage and injury. To supply the required energy, the battery cells must be firmly attached to the cell stacks. This is a major challenge, because the cells are quite delicate. No heat or force can be applied in the joining process. At the same time, the joint must meet the highest demands in terms of rigidity and shock behavior.

The use of elastic materials makes it possible to absorb vibrations and improve the durability of the battery. In addition, the avoidance of air pockets is essential for full contact and complete electrical isolation. In the event of an accident, air pockets can cause short circuits, a major safety concern in high-voltage systems. Rivet-riveted batteries meet high mechanical performance requirements. And they provide a clean method of joining without heat, flame, sparks, spatter or fumes.

2. Correct temperature to maximize efficiency

Temperature management is a critical task in battery manufacturing. High-voltage battery cells must operate within a specific temperature range to preserve their performance and avoid overheating. For this reason, a thermally conductive paste is applied. But to ensure full thermal conductivity, gap filling is crucial. This is a challenge, because the liquid material is applied in large volumes. On top of that, the material is often very abrasive and can wear the equipment quickly.

Sealing of the battery cover

Protecting batteries from moisture is crucial to avoid reducing battery performance, which can damage the high-voltage system and delicate cells. In addition, the battery emits gases that can be hazardous. To keep moisture out and prevent gas leakage, the battery tray must be 100% hermetically sealed before the lid is mounted. With precise metering technology it is possible to ensure a uniform, uninterrupted bead with no gaps or leakage.

4. Usefulness to ensure a removable future in future applications

The right combination of technologies makes it possible to repair and disassemble the battery easily and sustainably.

On the other hand, there are also other factors to take into account to arrive at a perfect result such as 1) the rigidity of the car battery, an important component that affects the driving experience; 2) the stability of the battery within the structural parts, its high performance in case of an accident must be ensured; 3) reliable and robust connections to avoid loss of performance; 4) weight. Decreasing the overall weight means gaining energy and higher efficiency, therefore, a higher range on a single charge.

For this reason it is always good to rely on companies specialized in this type of technology that offer worldwide proven tools and solutions.

Source: El Litoral

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