Saturday, July 13, 2024

Kuka Lands Major Order for Welding Robots in Electric Vehicle Production

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German robotics expert Kuka has secured a substantial contract to supply welding robots for the production of electric vehicles (EVs) to an undisclosed automotive client. The deal, valued in the double-digit million euros, marks Kuka’s largest single order in this field to date.

The order comprises 23 cells equipped with integrated robots designed for Friction Stir Welding (FSW). These cells, which include Kuka’s KR FORTEC robots and other essential components, will be seamlessly integrated into the client’s EV production lines.

“The robots in the cells weld battery trays together and join cooling plates to the battery trays in a second production step,” explained Kuka. Battery trays are crucial components in EVs, requiring welding techniques that ensure they are leak-proof, thermally efficient, and structurally sound to protect occupants in the event of an accident.

FSW welding, the technology at the heart of this process, involves using a rotating, pin-like tool to plasticize materials through frictional heat, enabling the joining of dissimilar materials such as aluminum, magnesium, copper, or steel without the need for shielding gas or flux cored wire, as in conventional welding processes. Kuka highlighted that this method is not only energy-efficient but also minimizes material consumption.

This significant contract underscores the growing importance of automation and robotics in the EV manufacturing sector, as companies seek efficient and sustainable solutions to meet the rising demand for electric vehicles globally.

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