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The new gas tank: Constellium readies its first OEM EV battery tray

  • Magazine Article
  • 19AUTP10_04
Published 2019-10-01 by SAE International in United States
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  • English

Global Tier-1 aluminum specialist Constellium's first OEM EV battery enclosure is a far cry, engineering-wise, from the century-old fuel tank.

The “gas tank” is about to get a lot more sophisticated. Electric vehicle (EV) battery trays are highly-engineered components that barely existed a few years ago but play a wide role in an EV's safety, rigidity and weight - and therefore efficiency. They also need to be watertight. The enclosures typically reside within an EV's wheelbase and often serve double duty as the vehicle's underbelly, housing the complement of batteries, control and monitoring electronics along with cooling and high-voltage circuits.

Constellium, the Netherlands-based global Tier-1 supplier and aluminum specialist, recently invited Automotive Engineering to visit with the project lead on its first OEM battery tray, a 2.5 m × 1.4 m (8.2 ft × 4.6 ft) structure weighing approximately 70 kg (154 lb). Comprising aluminum castings, extrusions and sheet, the tray will house a 100 kWh battery pack for a soon-to-be-announced EV.