Dispensing solutions for electro mobility
The automotive industry is currently facing the great challenge brought about by the vehicle of the future: emission-free, completely autonomous and networked with the whole world.
Electronics is the main driving force behind innovation in this context. Whether it is battery technology and e-drive, sensor technology, connectivity or artificial intelligence, without highly functional and compact electronic components, the path to tomorrow’s mobility would remain closed.
The proportion of electronics installed in cars has been constantly increasing, responding not only to new requests, but also to more and more demanding regulations and new mobility concepts. Software is gaining importance, with new requests for intelligent systems with advanced security, assistance and comfort functions. This includes, for example, intelligent consumption optimization systems, driver assistance systems such as drowsiness detection or emergency brake assistants, car infotainment, etc.
At a higher level of automation, the demands on reliability, functionality and longevity of a vehicle’s electronics increase faster. Besides, components must be permanently protected against detrimental influences such as moisture, dust, extreme temperatures or aggressive substances. This is possible with exact and repeatable adhesive, sealing and potting processes.
A selection of dispensing applications for electro mobility is shown below.
1. Inductive charging station
Wireless charging using inductive power transmission which already works for smartphones is also expected to become possible for vehicles in the future.
To dissipate the heat generated during the charging process, the circuit boards in the housing and the high-energy coil are encapsulated with liquid or pasty thermally conductive materials.
2. Radar sensor
The number of sensors installed in a modern car is rising rapidly with the aim of providing greater safety, comfort and efficiency. Any failure and defect, however, can quickly lead to critical situations.
To prevent this from happening, electronics are protected by sealing and encapsulation processes. Adhesive bonding or thermal management applications also play an important role here.
3. LED headlights
LEDs are much more efficient than other conventional lighting systems, but they also generate heat that if it is not reliably dissipated, the increased temperatures can have a negative effect on their service life.
In these cases, gap fillers or thermally conductive adhesives are commonly used.
4. High-voltage battery
High-voltage batteries are the heart of electric vehicles.
Of all available battery technologies, lithium-ion technology has emerged as the leading one, as it currently has the best performance.
Thermal influences have an enormous impact on the service life, capacity and above all the operational safety of Li-ion traction batteries. To prevent possible defects and damage caused by overheating, large quantities of heat-conducting potting materials are used, which protect against overheating and vibrations.
The number of displays installed in a car is constantly increasing (head-up display, digital mirrors…) and will play an important role as human-machine interfaces (HMIs).
On displays there is the optical bonding application, which provides better protection against dirt and moisture, and also offers a higher image quality.
To prevent dust and/or air inclusions, the bonding process takes place in a clean room and under vacuum.
6. Electric motor
In drive elements, the full encapsulation of stator windings has increasingly established itself as the preferred method over conventional motor impregnation processes.
Potting materials protect the electric motor from moisture, excessive heat generation, mechanical stress or aggressive substances.
To avoid the introduction of air bubbles into the stator windings, encapsulation under vacuum is recommended.
7. Power electronics
Power electronics is a key component of every hybrid and electric vehicle as the control center and “brain” of the electric drive.
To protect the housings against external influences such as moisture or chemicals, liquid sealants are applied, which can also act as bonding elements. Thermal conductive pastes are also a frequent field of application here.
8. Charging plug
Outdoor charging stations are often exposed to different agents. To protect the cables and make the plug more robust, the housing is often filled with liquid potting resins.
Also, to avoid the introduction of air bubbles inside the housing, encapsulation under vacuum is necessary.
The following link shows a summary video of these applications.