Much of what drives the advancement of EVs today is what you don’t see. For example, crash-worthy adhesives that bond body and battery components along with performance polymers and thermal interface materials that safely manage battery temperature. At DuPont, we’re developing adhesive and plastic solutions that help automakers worldwide produce EVs that perform better than ever. Solutions that help OEMs meet the challenges of safety, fast charging, optimizing costs, and durability.
Here are four ways DuPont adhesives and plastics are moving EVs forward.
1. Safer, cooler, and longer-lasting batteries
With EVs, the massive battery pack can pose a risk of fire or electrocution if it’s not properly insulated and secured. EV batteries must be crash-durable for safety.
The DuPont R&D team collaborates with automakers to customize products to meet safety and performance specifications. For example, DuPont’s collaboration with Volkswagen on its MEB platform resulted in the development of BETAMATE™ 2090 structural adhesive. The new adhesive, modified from existing DuPont technology, helped ensure battery pack frame structural integrity by demonstrating stiffness, durability, and crash performance. It also delivered process efficiencies that simplified the manufacturing process and shortened cycle times.
[Please download the complete VW/BETAMATE™ 2090 case study below.]
Another consideration with EV battery components is that they must operate within the optimum temperature window of 25°C during operations and below 60°C while charging. Operation outside this range can strain batteries. If it’s too cold, performance, efficiency, and range suffer. If it’s too hot, the battery deteriorates, resulting in shorter battery life and possible safety issues.
BETAFORCE™ TC adhesive acts as a thermal conductive material. It’s ideal for adhering EV battery components because of its ability to bond dissimilar substrates while drawing heat away from critical battery components.
Performance polymer-based battery housings and seals also are critical to EV safety and durability. They must manage heat and provide good chemical resistance to water, oil, and glycol.
DuPont™ Zytel® nylon resins resist aging in high-heat automotive applications. These solutions are ideal for EV battery components like housings, end plates, coolant pipes, and connectors.
Seals and gaskets made with DuPont™ Vamac® ethylene acrylic elastomer adhere well to metal; exhibit good sealing properties; and are resistant to water, glycol, and oil, as well as ozone and UV light.
2. High performance e-motors and power electronics
EV manufacturers face two major challenges with e-motors. First, thermal management and heat dissipation. Second, increasing efficiency and power in a limited space. DuPont offers proven products for improving e-motor performance.
When Hyundai came to DuPont for a solution to improve e-motor efficiency and thermal management for an HEV model, our team developed an automated bobbin manufacturing process. DuPont™ Zytel® HTN was used to reduce plastic insulation thickness with minimal impact on performance. Thinner-walled parts allowed more space for winding copper wire and the transfer of more power. Zytel® also allowed for reduction in the volume of the bobbin corner area with higher stiffness and good insulation.
Zytel® electrical-friendly (EF) formulations are ideal for e-motor applications because Zytel® doesn’t crack when winding speeds increase.
[Please download the complete Zytel® HTN/LCPA product sheet below.]
The safety of EV drivetrains demands plastic solutions that are reliable in high-voltage applications and durable for the long run. The DuPont portfolio includes Zytel® and Crastin® materials that provide stable orange color at elevated temperatures over time, hydrolysis-resistance, high mechanical properties, and resistance to thermal shock. These combined benefits result in extended component life for more reliable, longer-lasting EVs. Orange Zytel® and Crastin® products are ideal for high-voltage terminals and connectors, busbars, and high-voltage switches and relays.
[image: spider chart showing performance of Zytel/Crastin stable orange materials – below is for reference. JPG file attached.]
3. Lightweight yet safe, durable, and sustainable
Lighter weight vehicles with structurally bonded components contribute significantly to emissions reduction. DuPont™ BETAMATE™ structural adhesives and BETAFORCE™ composite bonding adhesives can be used for multi-material bonding and knock down vehicle weight significantly.
In the case of the LEVC TX London Black Taxi, the weight of the
extruded-aluminum body structure was reduced by 30% because DuPont adhesive technologies allowed for thinner substrates while continuous bond lines helped ensure body strength and stiffness.
Safety and durability benefits also are important in EV design and development. For instance, the use of Zytel® HTN for cable insulation and jacketing, electrical and electronic connectors, and e-motor housings helps reduce vehicle weight while enhancing durability and providing heat and chemical resistance.
Plus, DuPont’s innovative BETATECH™ thermal interface materials enable easier repair and replacement of battery cells to help create battery packs that can last the lifetime of the vehicle and allow battery components to be reused or recycled.
DuPont EV advances extend to manufacturing as well. For instance, innovations in adhesive formulation allow for the reduction or elimination of solvents and hazardous plasticizers through primer-free and phthalate-free technologies. Through attention to our sustainability goals, we help EV producers with theirs.
4. Connectivity and control systems
Advanced driver-assistance systems (ADAS), sensors and cameras require a wide range of adhesives and resins for high-speed, high-frequency, and 5G applications. These materials must minimize energy loss while increasing accuracy.
DuPont multi-functional materials combine high-speed data transmission capabilities with mechanical strength, flame retardancy, dimensional stability, and aesthetics. Our vehicle radar solutions combine miniaturization and frequency transparency with reliability.
DuPont stretchable conductors and dielectrics for in-mold electronics allow ADAS designers to push their ideas further.
Crastin® PBT, Zytel®, and Zytel® HTN nylon resins enhance the lifespan and performance of signal electronics.
How DuPont can help move your EVs forward
DuPont materials are proven performers in advancing EV design. Structural adhesives for crash-durable lightweight body bonding; materials to improve e-motor efficiency; thermal interface materials for hot performance and cool batteries; and solutions for advanced connectivity are just a few examples of how our solutions help customers solve their challenges.
Many designers and engineers find that the DuPont portfolio already has the solution they need to drive their EVs forward. If you have an EV safety, performance, or cost challenge that our existing products don’t address, the DuPont R&D team is ready to collaborate with you on a solution. We invite you to dEVelop with DuPont.