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A match made in heaven: thermoplastics and electric vehicle battery enclosures

There are a range of materials to choose from when designing battery enclosures for electric vehicles (EVs). Because metal has limitations in terms of design, cost and weight, many battery designers are switching more and more to thermoplastics. We cater to this need with a range of resins.

Makrolon® and Bayblend® meet the need for material selection with electric vehicle battery modules

Electric vehicle battery pack (EVBP) manufacturers are constantly optimizing the energy output, performance, and cost structure of their battery packs.  

Supporting them in this quest are the Makrolon ® and Bayblend® resins. They offer the high precision required for mass li-ion battery production, while allowing for an all-in-one part design to reduce the number of individual parts and to lower assembly costs of battery enclosures. Makrolon ® and Bayblend® resins allow for tight part tolerances and support fast assembly techniques to scale the production of battery systems in electrical vehicles and other applications like ESS battery modules. 

What’s more, they contribute to enhanced safety thanks to their good thermal management, including great ductility and flame-retardant performance. 

We know what EV battery enclosure creators are looking for – and support them in every way

We recognize that safety, compliance, performance and affordability are major drivers in the electric vehicle mobility market.  

Due to their desirable property profiles, flame-retardant polycarbonate (PC) and acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) blends are increasingly preferred over other semicrystalline polymer classes like polyamide and PBT. This not only caters to the immediate needs of electric vehicle battery pack manufacturers – it also allows for modularity, interoperability, second-life use and recycling of battery enclosures. 

Battery packs, battery enclosures, battery modules, battery systems, battery cells…whatever it is that you manufacture, we have got you covered with our Bayblend® and Makrolon® polycarbonate solutions. 

The time has come for better electric vehicle (EV) battery enclosures.
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A major advantage of thermoplastics is that they can be produced using injection molding

Injection molding with amorphous polycarbonate and PC blends can accept high volumes, delivering the high precision needed for the mass production of li-ion batteries and battery systems.  

At the same time, intricate details can be produced to allow for design freedom. In terms of battery enclosures, it lowers the number of individual parts needed, and thus reduces assembly costs.  

Processing EV battery system parts by injection molding also results in predictable shrinkage values during the molding procedure to ensure the right mold dimensions.  

Many different thermoplastic resins can be used for EV battery packs: 

  • Amorphous resins have clear advantages in that they experience minimal changes over a wide temperature range, and post-shrinkage is negligible.  
  • The use of polycarbonate (PC) and PC blends is especially advantageous, since those materials also have high impact strength over a wide temperature range, high thermal management stability, good flame resistance and a low coefficient of linear thermal expansion (CLTE).

These Bayblend® and Makrolon® thermoplastics are suitable for electric vehicle battery enclosures: 

Bayblend® FR3010 is a standard flame-retardant PC and ABS blend that has been used for years in various li-ion batteries. Its properties are well-suited for many battery enclosure parts. 

Often, manufacturers of li-ion battery packs for electric cars turn to adhesives, and in particular UV curing adhesives, to bond the lid on the body of the battery module housing. For those applications, we offer the Bayblend® FR3040 EV thermoplastic solution. In cases where it is necessary to see through the lid after adhesive bonding (e.g. for quality control), there is clear Makrolon® 6555 polycarbonate. 

In some instances, battery pack manufacturers want to make intricate structures for their battery cells and need a V-0 rating at very low wall thicknesses of 0.75 millimeters. For these customers, we offer Bayblend® FR3045 EV and Bayblend® FR3080 EV thermoplastics, which deliver optimized flow and stiffness. 

We also offer several resins for thermal management and conductivity, some of which are also electrical insulators. These materials can help to prevent the overheating of the battery, especially during fast charging, by conducting heat away from the battery cell instead of trapping the heat in the battery pack. The flame-retardant version of these resins is Makrolon® TC110 FR polycarbonate.

Future battery technology is possible today

There are three main aspects to making electric car mobility a success: a modern EV design, li-ion batteries or battery cells with high energy density, and excellent thermal management for energy storage.  

The range of Bayblend® and Makrolon® thermoplastic solutions make an essential contribution to future battery technology – today. This is because battery modules or battery enclosures made with these solutions meet the need for effective thermal management with li-ion batteries and battery systems featuring ever higher energy storage and energy density.  

Battery pack manufacturers are constantly optimizing their battery enclosures. Our range of Bayblend® and Makrolon® thermoplastic products cater to these manufacturers’ needs for safe, cost-effective and durable li-ion battery cells made of lightweight polymer. They form the basis for providing future battery technology today.

Terry Davis

Global Technical Lead – Batteries

Key Benefits

  • Safety:  Polymers are excellent for thermal management, are ductile and flame-retardant.
  • Ease of use:  Injection molding supports fast production and greater EV design freedom.
  • Conductivity:  Good thermal and electric conductivity are suitable for battery packs.
  • Durability:  Resistance to chemicals and outdoor conditions allows for reliability.
  • Cost-effective:  Fast, efficient injection molding results in cost-effective battery packs.

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