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Automotive Solutions for EV Battery Housing at EUROGUSS 2020

Editor: Nicole Kareta

Battery housings play a central role in the electrification of vehicles. In addition to the classic aluminum cast solution for a battery housing, Nemak also offers assembly solutions that require know-how in the field of joining techniques. At EUROGUSS 2020, Nemak highlighted typical problem areas in BEV battery housings and demonstrated approaches to delivering tailor-made solutions.

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Battery housings play a central role in the electrification of vehicles.
Battery housings play a central role in the electrification of vehicles.
(Source: gemeinfrei / Pexels )

The requirement profile for battery housings is very complex - from crash protection and tightness to solutions for battery cooling and ease of maintenance. For these challenges, Nemak - a provider of lightweighting solutions for the automotive industry - has developed new solution concepts to meet the specific requirements of the OEMs. The battery housing model on show at EUROGUSS 2020 demonstrated where the special challenges involved in the development and high volume serial production of a battery housing lie and how Nemak has overcome them with its solutions.

“We offer our customers the opportunity to realize highly advanced and tailor-made solutions, from the conception phase through the development process and up to high volume serial production. This includes the entire product and process engineering - not only of the cast components but also of complex structural components subjected to high levels of stress. Here, joining technologies play a decisive role,” says Josef Nueschen, Director of Vehicle Structures at Nemak.

The battery housing model demonstrated these challenges. A series manufacturer of battery housings for electric vehicles must account for safety, tightness and tolerance requirements, as well as the assembly sequence and welding distortion. Manufacturing and business know-how regarding maintenance and repair in the ensuing period are also needed. Thanks to the demonstrator, the solution approaches could be recognized, named, and understood.

This picture shows the BEV Demonstrator developed by Nemak.
This picture shows the BEV Demonstrator developed by Nemak.
(Source: Nemak)

“The factors to consider are crash safety calculations,” explains Josef Nueschen, “and perfect integration into the chassis. And then again, there are the matters of battery cooling and tolerance management.” The demonstrator clarifies the importance of the joining concept to the bodywork and illustrate how the battery electronics can be functionally integrated using cast components, and it will also reveal how much know-how goes into the various production techniques employed.

An exemplary joining technology used is friction-stir welding, which enables gastight, multilayer joints to be welded together without the need for additional welding substances or shielding gases. In contrast to conventional fusion welding processes, the joint is created at a temperature lower than the melting point of the materials, which enables its mechanical and technological properties to meet the highest safety requirements.

“A high level of development and simulation competence is necessary,” concludes Josef Nueschen. “And we can offer that, thanks to our global development network.”

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