Factors such as the speed at which a battery is charged are important to understand, as with faster charging solutions comes higher voltage levels, meaning the sealing and protection of components is more critical. Durability of components, too, is essential, given the expectations placed on e-mobility solutions both in terms of mileage and effective lifespan.
At Datwyler, our focus is on creating components that are durable, efficient and that contribute to the effectiveness and safety of batteries.
As the markets transition from the internal combustion engine (ICE) to battery electric alternatives, our portfolio has expanded accordingly. For example, within the battery unit itself we engineer components such as thermal interface sheets, for use between the cold plate and the module, and several solutions for HV connectors – which require not only excellent sealing performance but also electrical insulation and fire resistance.
For battery control units Datwyler offers a very precise two-component (2K) high voltage connector sealing solution, plug seals, and also a safety valve outlet seal which is normally located along the pack for pressure release. Datwyler’s portfolio includes O-rings for cooling line connectors to ensure the sealing performance of the coolant in the cooling line.
Thermal propagation protection sheet
Cell monitoring and sensing
Printed temperature sensors
Active pressure/flow control valve
Embedded humidity or pressure sensor
Thermal interface sheet (thermal conductive, gap fill, cushion)
Battery pack foldable gasket and seals
Battery module foldable gasket and seals
Power electronics seal
Connector & plug seals/protection
Safety valve outlet seal
Seals for cooling line connectors
Cell seal cylindrical
Cell seal prismatic or pouch
In order to seal a battery inside its housing, loose-seal, Cure-in-Place (CIP), or Form-in-Place (FIP) solutions are normally used. Whilst they are effective, there are certain limitations to these methods. For example, CIP seals cannot be reopened once secured without destroying the battery system, and whilst FIP seals can be reopened, their durability is suboptimal as they require separate elastomer components sealed permanently within the housing metal.
Datwyler has developed a foldable gasket, which combines advanced elastomer materials with metal plates at intervals that can be specified and mounted according to unique part geometries. This combination enables a battery to be opened without damage should repair or maintenance be required, and also brings a wide variety of additional benefits. With foldable gaskets, for example, a very large part can be handled and shipped easily, and the metal part and the elastomer gasket seal are integrated together to minimize installation errors.
This installation reliability is superior to a loose seal, as loose seals must be installed manually by hand. This can open the door for human error and is not precise. Silicon based CIP and FIP sealing solutions, although placed using an automated process, are even harder to install precisely as the curing time is influenced by differences in the external environment.
For the foldable gasket, the metal elements with mounts integrated to OEM specifications enable it to be installed by robotic arms from OEMs or battery makers very precisely - eliminating manual installations to save time and improve production efficiency for battery manufacturers. Our material expertise ensures the bonding between metal and elastomer is very strong, and we leverage in-house multi-component technology to make sure the metal and elastomers perform as one. The metal elements of the foldable gasket can also be positioned between the housing and the cover of the battery, providing superior electrical conductivity when compared to loose-seal, CIP or FIP alternatives.
All of these elements, combined with our expertise in component design and ability to understand complex part geometries, allows every critical sealing solution to be optimized before it is placed into serial production.