Specialised laser laboratories unveiled for e-mobility production

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Comau, a global developer of advanced systems for the industrial automation sector and an expert in laser welding, has created a number of highly specialised laser laboratories to help firms develop, implement and optimise laser processes for e-mobility.

Two of the labs are located in Turin, Italy, one specialising in batteries and the other dedicated to e-motors, while another two are based in Shanghai, China and Detroit, US.

Comau aims the labs to increase the efficiency, speed and value of e-mobiltiy production, thus enabling companies to offer highly competitive solutions for electrification.

The labs are equipped with Comau NJ-220 robots, which are powered by Comau's LHYTE (Laser Hybrid Technology) system, developed in partnership with Prima Electro and presented at the Laser World of Photonics in 2017. The LHYTE is able to automatically alternate between using either fibre or diode lasers to ensure optimal high-precision joining, which is vital in the assembly of an e-battery or e-motor. It can also handle the complexity of working with different melting temperatures of materials such as copper and aluminium while guaranteeing a strong joint seal with a low level of electrical resistance.

'We can create any type of battery pack for any power level and are able to assemble the entire electrical battery, from the welding of individual cells which make up a module, and the stacking of the various modules contained in a battery pack, right through to the laser welding of the entire case,' explained Giovanni Di Stefano, CTO of electrification at Comau. 'We are also developing a similar solution for hairpin motor laser welding at our newest lab.'

The new laser laboratories can be configured, equipped and adapted to suit the required process and the type of product being manufactured, according to Comau. Through them the firm will be able to develop and optimise every phase of the required laser welding process when requested by the client, from the prototype phase to the production of pre-series.

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