Sponsored by Bosch Rexroth:
The electrical automobile (EV) revolution good points extra momentum on daily basis, driving change to automotive manufacturing in unprecedented methods. With quickly rising demand comes the necessity to quickly scale meeting operations — and that may create vital challenges.
Automobile producers consistently search new, extra productive automation applied sciences to spice up their high quality and productiveness. Together with many widespread meeting workflows, they face new challenges related to scaling up battery pack and e-axle manufacturing. They want automation options to assist combine electrical battery and powertrain manufacturing seamlessly into total meeting processes.
Bosch Rexroth has an industry-leading portfolio of automation know-how to fulfill these wants, with a long time of expertise offering manufacturing and automation options to main automotive OEMs, in addition to Tier 1 and Tier 2 suppliers.
Broad vary of meeting challenges
Electrical autos have changed engines, gasoline tanks and transmissions with electrical motors, regenerative braking know-how and superior battery packs. Assembling these new parts presents distinctive challenges; on the similar time, there are meeting processes widespread to each EV and inside combustion (IC) automobile meeting strains.
For instance, EVs have physique components which might be welded utilizing high-speed six-axis robots with superior welding controls. Extraordinarily exact management of weld high quality is essential to the long-term efficiency of the automobile; poor welds can result in separation and vibration in physique components over time.
To unravel these advanced welding challenges with most pace and absolute high quality management, Bosch Rexroth has launched the PRC7000 welding controller platform.
The PRC7000 expands the variety of warmth blocks accessible, so plant operations can customise welding to particular throughput and materials traits — a significant benefit over older-generation techniques. Additionally, it might retailer as much as 10,000 welding applications that may be simply constructed by way of a drag-and-drop interface to include extra refined welding sequences.
Enhancing handbook meeting
Though EV crops are extremely automated, additionally they use the most recent handbook meeting strategies to put in a variety of parts and techniques. Assemblers set up headlights, windshields, retractable sunroofs, seats and door and window controls, usually additionally connecting them to the automobile’s management module. Actual precision on this course of is essential to ship autos that function as flawlessly as doable.
Bosch Rexroth gives a sophisticated portfolio of clever tightening instruments to offer the productiveness and high quality management wanted for these handbook processes. They supply the exact, repeatable efficiency essential to high-volume meeting strains. The portfolio consists of the EXACT ION collection of cordless screwdrivers, providing industry-leading accuracy, sturdiness and power effectivity, in addition to ergonomic design and decrease weight to boost employee consolation.
Wider use of those sorts of i4.0-ready instruments helps meeting strains enhance throughput and function with higher flexibility as completely different automobile fashions transfer via the road, whereas on the similar time producing essential information that plant operators can use to enhance coaching, alter workflows and apply lean manufacturing ideas.
A number of applied sciences to spice up battery pack manufacturing
There are 4 main steps in battery pack manufacturing widespread to most operations: electrode manufacturing, cell meeting, module meeting and pack building, which additionally usually consists of end-of-line battery testing.
Every stage makes use of a posh array of automation applied sciences to go from uncooked supplies to accomplished packs. Given the essential position of the battery within the long-term efficiency and worth of EVs, battery manufacturing requires excessive throughput charges mixed with extraordinarily tight meeting tolerances and high quality management techniques.
In electrode manufacturing, uncooked supplies transfer via a number of automated processing steps. Maximizing management over these processes requires applied sciences that guarantee cells are created with desired electrochemical properties, lifecycle and power density.
Bosch Rexroth’s ctrlX AUTOMATION platform options superior controller and drive techniques designed exactly for these high-throughput manufacturing processes. The ctrlX CORE controller offers superior closed-loop sag and loop management to eradicate breakage and reduce waste. It additionally helps high-speed multi-axis synchronization for net pace and place alignment.
In cell manufacturing, particular person batteries — cylindrical, pouch or different format — are mixed into cells. Many producers are working to optimize the stacking course of on this step as a result of streamlining stacking can enhance the throughput of your complete line.
Excessive-speed robotic dealing with techniques, both delta robots or linear robots, are important instruments on this stacking course of. The Sensible Operate Package for Dealing with is a extremely environment friendly linear robotic possibility well-suited to this course of step. It’s really plug-and-produce: trendy on-line instruments help fast and intuitive part choice and configuration, and the pre-installed software program permits for simpler commissioning, supporting quicker manufacturing begin and serving to pace to market.
Modular motion and transport options
Going from uncooked supplies to a examined and put in battery pack presents a significant automation transport problem. With every meeting step, weight and part dimension will increase, so a spread of fabric transport conveyors and different techniques is important.
From switch techniques for quickly shifting merchandise weighing a number of grams to linear motor-driven techniques that may exactly transport as much as over 400 kg, state-of-the-art conveyors and linear motor transport techniques maximize environment friendly use of manufacturing facility ground area and allow easily flowing, intelligently linked manufacturing.
VarioFlow plus plastic chain conveyors are confirmed techniques that quickly transfer cell assemblies horizontally, vertically, round obstacles or built-in with different course of flows. These additionally help workpiece pallets to convey cell parts the place positioning or increased stopping precision is required.
Additional down the road, Bosch Rexroth gives the linear motor-based Versatile Transport System (FTS). It helps pallet-based transport and permits for particular person provider management for extra advanced motion at quicker throughput charges. Mixed with our intralogistics autonomous cellular robots (AMRs), Bosch Rexroth is uniquely geared up to handle nearly each battery manufacturing transport problem.
Profitable meeting strains design conveyor and materials transport options early within the growth course of, not as a last step as soon as all of the manufacturing machines and cells have been outlined. This helps guarantee productive motion of merchandise and supplies via each course of step and prevents constructing in non-value-added transport time. Bosch Rexroth has deep expertise serving to choose and join completely different transport techniques so the proper materials circulate is established — and may be simply modified as manufacturing necessities evolve.
Automation perception to enhance EV meeting productiveness
As EV producers are beneath strain to broaden manufacturing, they run dangers by merely throwing know-how at their throughput challenges, fairly than contemplating how effectively their know-how and part selections work collectively. All this meeting know-how needs to be engineered and harmonized to maximise throughput with out sacrificing the standard of the tip product.
Bosch Rexroth can leverage its industry-leading automation portfolio and deep automotive manufacturing experience to assist forestall this threat. We’ve productive partnerships with main manufacturing facility automation specialists. They work with our skilled automation know-how consultants, following a novel, concurrent engineering method.
Utilizing this method, we associate to conduct system design, programming and part acquisition and integration in tight, overlapping time frames to deploy full automation options extra quickly.
Our options embody nearly each main step in EV manufacturing, with specialised experience in EV battery pack manufacturing. Our concurrent engineering methodology succeeds as a result of we again it, and all our full automation options, with international engineering, service and technical help sources.