Managing Heat Through E-Fluids

Presented by:

  • Michael Gahagan, Technology Development Manager, The Lubrizol Corporation

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Oct 5, 2023, 8:45 am EDT

New thermal management driveline e-fluids, designed to enable the latest electrified powertrains and batteries to perform at their very best, have been developed for the latest electric vehicle hardware.

For example, many earlier electric vehicle powertrains were developed using automatic transmission fluids (ATF). Not optimised for EVs or their thermal management, these are being superseded by the latest generation of lubricant fluid technology, termed driveline “e-fluids”. e-Fluids are optimized for automotive electrified hardware types, such as the latest generation of e-axles, and cool and protect such devices much more effectively.  

Lubricants are now expected to be in direct contact with powered motor windings and exposed and electrically insulated electrical components. Characteristics such as the ability to cool electrically energized surfaces in addition to other surfaces that can become hot as well as the protection of exposed electrics are of increased importance. 

Motor efficiency increases with reduced fluid churning losses and suitable cooling. It can be further improved using optimised fluids which provide thermal management.  Ensuring suitable wear performance as required by the hardware engineers is of vital importance to protect the gears and bearings, and is an essential benefit provided by the e-fluids.

The latest types of additive components used in e-fluids have evolved significantly over traditional types, and a new class will be described in the webinar. This is the most recent type of powertrain e-fluid technology to enter the market, which has no corrosive active sulfur additive present, sometimes termed “sulfur-free”.

The e-fluid is an engineered component and forms part of the overall design of the electrified hardware. The presentation will cover the fundamentals of the latest e-fluid design, fluid properties, and how a thermal management e-fluid is best evaluated for performance.

This presentation will be of interest to engineers and fluid formulators seeking an introduction the basic principles behind fluid thermal design. In addition, the latest fluid testing methods to address some of the hardware challenges, resolved by the fluid, will be described with the aim of enabling the engineer to make the best thermal management fluid choice for their latest hardware designs.

Now available to watch on-demand: Register for this webinar to watch a recording of the presentation and audience Q&A.

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