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Automotive Product Finder Magazine | Electric vehicle body design will have changes in ergonomics
Electric vehicle body design will have changes in ergonomics
Lightweighting & battery integration are key attributes for EV body
India topped the charts of 2020 vehicle exports to South Africa
Electric vehicles will have a significantly lower overall part count as compared to vehicles using internal combustion engines. EV body will have better optimised design, with more free space, says Sathyajith TK, Vice President at AXISCADES, in this interview with Rakesh Rao.
What are key challenges faced by automakers when designing auto body?
One of the key challenges automakers faces while designing auto body is the management of multiple configurations which has an adverse impact on cost. There are increased requirements for safety and emission which again have an adverse impact on cost. In a highly competitive auto market, cost is a very detrimental factor. Changes in technology and homologation requirements also pose a challenge to the auto body design when it comes to newer technologies such as electric vehicles (EV). Light weighting and standardisation is also a key factor to be considered in auto body design.
What kind of solutions do you offer to auto industry for body designing & manufacturing?
We offer a wide range of services to the automotive industry, starting from concept designing stage to continuous manufacturing support. We provide design and validation services which include CAD and CAE for various automotive structures and components. Our expertise also covers design and development of various automotive systems. We support manufacturing through tooling services such as jig/fixture design, CNC programming etc. Our Manufacturing Engineering Services (MES) include a wide range of solutions like assembly process design, facility design, assembly validation and simulation, supply chain support and part manufacturing support. AXISCADES’ other services include prototype development and limited batch production of components. Additionally, we provide value engineering solutions and support international OEMs develop and establish a local supply chain.
How is your company helping automakers in body design and fastening development process of new vehicle?
We support all aspects of automotive design and manufacturing with a very quick turnaround time. Our agile and flexible workforce can be redeployed at the shortest possible notice and support diverse activities across the value chain, right from New Product Implementation (NPI) to value engineering studies on existing products. Our services help the automotive industry meet the schedule and cost challenges and deliver significant value to their customers.
How EV body will be different from vehicles using Internal Combustion Engine (ICE)?
Electric vehicles will have a significantly lower overall part count as compared to vehicles using internal combustion engines. The other significant difference arises from the fact that the battery pack would be heavier than an engine for similar vehicle performance. The battery pack will also need to be further protected to adhere to crash safety factors. It would also have much more compact drive system.
So, in general, an EV body will have better optimised design, with more free space. With the battery pack situated increasingly on the vehicle floor, the occupants will have a higher seating position with additional luggage storage options.
What key changes need to be made in body designing & manufacturing for EVs (which will be different from vehicles using ICE)?
Lightweight materials are likely to be used in the body-in-white (BIW) of an EV. Usage of such materials (for example, aluminium alloys or composites) will lead to various changes in joining technologies (welding, riveting, etc). This will have a cascading effect on all sub-processes and design of the manufacturing set up and supply chain. Since the batteries may be placed underneath the floor of the vehicle for safety purposes, and lack of a large transmission system, EV body design will have changes in ergonomics in general, with much more design possibilities. Considering the number of components will be reduced, and the battery performance optimisation, motor controls, etc will be computer-controlled, the assembly may be based on modularised subsystems, leading to overall simplification of the manufacturing process.
Various Automotive Systems
Internal Combustion Engine
Compact Drive System
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