Multi-material battery casing for electromobility: AZL industry network conducts joint concept study and product development
In October 2020, AZL together with an international industrial consortium consisting of 34 companies (status of today) launched a joint project to develop a cost-competitive multi-material battery casing. The consortium includes automotive OEM Audi AG and suppliers along the value chain. The 8-month product development starts with an international market analysis as well as a concept study in which different multi-material component concepts including production scenarios will be developed and evaluated with regard to their costs. Finally, a final multi-material battery casing is designed in detail, which will be manufactured as a prototype in a follow-up project. The project is still open to join for companies interested.
The demand for electric vehicles is increasing and with it the need for lightweight and robust battery casings. A large number of different battery casings with very different component concepts already exist on the market. However, these battery casings, which are usually made of aluminum and steel, cannot offer the optimal solution for each of the numerous requirements. The project that emerged from the AZL Partnership instead pursues a multi-material approach that uses the right material at the right place for each specific requirement.
The majority of existing battery casings for electric vehicles are made of steel and aluminum.
The project consortium: 34 companies along the entire value chain
The entire value chain is already represented, including OEMs and many Automotive Tier 1s, manufacturers of fibres, resins, semi-finished products, sandwich technologies, manufactures and providers of production systems and automation. Just to name a few: Airex AG, AUDI AG, Asahi Kasei Europe GmbH, Covestro, EconCore, IPTE, Johns Manville, KAUTEX TEXTRON GmbH & Co. KG, KÖMMERLING Chemische Fabrik GmbH, Saudi Aramco Technologies Company, Schuler Pressen GmbH. The project is still open to join for companies interested.
Dr.-Ing. Florian Meyer, Audi AG
|“Battery casings are a key component in electric vehicles. The requirements are challenging and very individual for different vehicle classes,” says Dr.-Ing. Florian Meyer, project management mentor from the Technical Development department of Audi AG. “We are looking forward to the creative exchange with the cross-value chain and cross-material class consortium to find out how we can save weight and costs by using plastic-based multi-material solutions versus status quo solutions made of metals.”
The AZL will initially draw up a market overview with the industrial consortium that includes existing series components and concepts and identifies the relevant manufacturers, users, suppliers and supply chains on the market. Standards and requirements for battery casings will be derived from the existing components and the advantages of multi-material approaches will be evaluated. On the basis of a detailed data sheet, various product concepts will be worked out and associated production scenarios for multi-material battery casings will be established. The participants can select component concepts for which CAD models, FEM analyses and process chains are developed and finally evaluated with regard to their production costs. A final multi-material battery casing will be worked out in detail and will be manufactured as a real battery casing prototype after this 8-month development project.
The 8-month project will provide an overview of existing solutions for battery casings, evaluate the advantages of multi-material approaches, derive component design and production concepts and evaluate them in terms of performance and cost. A component concept will be elaborated in detail. © AZL Aachen GmbH
The current status: Kick-off completed – still open to join
We had a valuable and highly informative exchange with more than 90 representatives of the initial 30 participating companies during the kick-off meeting with 20 pitch-presentations from the project partners on October 22nd, 2020. We are currently screening the different existing component concepts in order to define the requirements for battery casings and a specification sheet on this basis. The next consultation will focus on requirements for battery casings within a milestone meeting in early December. Interested companies can still join the project.
Further background information on the development of the battery casing market and details of the project can be found under the following links:
Interested companies can contact Philipp Fröhlig:
Senior Project Manager | AZL Aachen GmbH
Phone: +49 241 475 735 14
Mobile: +49 176 80488799