Automotive Engineering - March 2024 - 6

TECHNOLOGY REPORT
BATTERIES
Battery-analysis
pioneer Voltaiq
partners with Siemens
Battery-analysis pioneer Voltaiq and
Siemens Digital Industries Software
announced a partnership they said is
intended to help battery manufacturers
speed up the iterative process of improving
yield rates.
Some new battery plants, particularly
EV charging " oasis " proposed by fast-food giant Subway includes playground and other facilities to
make the best use of time while EVs recharge.
Hyundai, Kia, Mercedes-Benz and
Stellantis joined for an announced
$1-billion collaboration to install some
30,000 public chargers. MercedesBenz,
however, also said it plans to invest
more than $1 billion in a joint venture
with MN8 Energy to install a total
of 2,500 chargers at some 400 charging
hubs across North America by the
end of the decade.
Electrify America's Durham said the
Sarah Hipel, program manager, standards
and reliability, at the Joint Office of Energy
and Transportation, speaks at SAE's 2024
Government/Industry Meeting.
station became operational in
December 2023.
The NEVI program, Hipel said, includes
$100 million for routine maintenance
and repair, a vital component of
assuring high levels of charger uptime
and delivering the " first time, every
time " experience. Low uptime is frequently
noted as a pain point for the
existing infrastructure.
There currently is a complex patchwork
of sometimes overlapping automaker-guided
charging initiatives. Tesla
in 2023 arranged with multiple automakers
to grant those brands' EV customers
access to the coveted - and
highly reliable - Supercharger network,
but BMW General Motors, Honda,
6 March 2024
service is the only current plug-andcharge
compatible charging network
and its 900-plus stations and more than
4000 chargers are seeing increased
usage. She said the network averages
250,000 weekly charging sessions, but
asked rhetorically, " Where do we go
now that chargers are in the ground
and vehicles are on the road? "
Although there have been questions
about the continuing consumer uptake
of EVs, BMW's Bohn said at the conference
that the robustness of the charging
network is the key to achieving
consumer acceptance. " We are not
concerned about EV adoption, " he said.
" Once we improve the reliability of the
EV charging network, we will see the
increase in adoption. "
The Joint Office's Hipel said the charging
experience must improve for consumers
to embrace EV technology. " We
have [charging infrastructure] reliability
challenges. The strategy is to demonstrate
that we can do this - we need to
prove it. We have a lot of work to do. "
Bill Visnic
those started by OEMs, begin with
scrap rates as high as 90%, said Tal
Sholklapper, CEO of Voltaiq. Voltaiq's
enterprise battery intelligence platform
can reduce that number by tracking
thousands of data points during the
manufacturing process and helping factories
intervene on bad cells sooner.
The companies stated in a news release
that the industry is forecasting a 14-fold
increase in battery demand through
2030 but only a five-fold increase in
battery cell production through 2030
for EVs alone.
Speaking to a group of journalists
that included SAE Media, Sholklapper
said it has taken some battery plants
" four years, at a cost of billions of dollars,
to achieve a 10% scrap rate. " He
Raymond Kok, of Siemens, called the scrap
rates of some battery factories " disastrous. "
AUTOMOTIVE ENGINEERING
FROM TOP: SUBWAY; SAE/BILL VISNIC; SAE/CHRIS CLONTS

Automotive Engineering - March 2024

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