The Munich-based company E-Works Mobility, which specializes in the development and production of electrically powered vans, is pushing ahead with the evolution of the E-Works HEERO, the high-performance e-transporter in its class: the engineers recently focused on the complete redevelopment of a new battery box to replace the previous aluminium construction. The E-Works team found what they were looking for in the fiber-reinforced plastics expert SGL Carbon. The company is now supplying the first battery boxes made of glass fiber-reinforced plastic to E-car manufacturer following extensive prototype tests. And these highly stable protective battery casings offer several advantages - above all in terms of energy and raw material efficiency and in the safety-relevant area.
"SGL Carbon is one of the world's most innovative and efficient companies when it comes to high-strength plastic solutions: Whether in the automotive, aerospace, semiconductor technology, LED, solar and wind energy or lithium-ion battery industries - SGL Carbon solutions are used in particular where future technologies are involved. We are all the more pleased that we have found a new partner in SGL Carbon for our battery boxes, which are no longer made of aluminum, but of particularly light and at the same time very stable glass fiber-reinforced plastic," says Dominik Ashkar, Managing Director of E-Works Mobility GmbH. "It is certainly not a matter of course that a world-renowned company would take on the challenge of embarking on complex development work for small series production at great expense. This makes the result, which offers us and the vehicle user several advantages, all the more remarkable."
Technology is regularly evaluated and adapted
The newly developed battery housings not only offer considerable weight savings, but also better battery insulation and fire protection thanks to the significantly lower heat conduction compared to aluminum or even steel. The material is fire-retardant and only transfers heat to neighboring components to a very limited extent after an accident, for example. What's more, GRP is highly resistant to corrosion and has high electromagnetic compatibility.
"The use of plastic-based composite materials is extremely sensible, especially for electric vehicles, and leads to increased product and system efficiency. In series production, they offer significantly reduced costs compared to metal processing. Due to the lighter weight with comparable or even better stability, the material even contributes to better dynamic driving performance and ultimately a longer range. For us, the collaboration with E-Works is an excellent opportunity to prove many of these advantages in tough everyday use," says Jürgen Joos, Head of Program Management Materials in SGL Carbon's Business Unit Composite Solutions.
To ensure that this succeeds, the current project between the two innovation leaders will be regularly evaluated and further developed.