Battery Packaging Can Stand to Lose Some Weight

With the growing understanding of how plastics and composites can help lighten engine components and systems, more OEMs are focusing on the battery packaging inside an electric vehicle's powertrain and how to minimize its size and weight.

"Every pound deleted calculates into distance added per charge," said Calvin Nichols, transportation market segment manager at BASF.

This challenge has long concerned automotive engineers, especially because a more powerful, often bigger and heavier, battery is needed to power cars for the distances that today's consumer's desire.

"We understand this concern and right now, we're working with automakers and battery suppliers to provide the structural components that surround the battery, such as the separator tray," said Nichols.  "Applications like Ultradur (PBT) can help remove heavier materials and replace them with plastics, carbon fiber or fiber glass."

Thanks to a special combination of properties, Ultradur® is an ideal material for applications in electrical engineering and electronics.  As well as showing outstanding dimensional stability and excellent long-term electrical and thermal performance, it can be modified in many ways to:

  • enhance flowability
  • improve hydrolysis resistance
  • lower warpage
  • offer excellent laser-welding capabilities
  • boost flame-retardant effectiveness

Wherever electricity flows, plastics like Ultradur can help give automakers the confidence they need to replace heavier materials.

This means, among all the other efforts automakers are making to reduce total weight, vehicles - even electric vehicles -will continue to lighten up and lose some of that unnecessary poundage.

A win-win for both the automaker and the driver.