Additive manufacturing is changing how we build things and electric vehicles in how we go places. For these reasons they are often referred to as ‘disruptive technologies’ so combining them is sure to offer some interesting possibilities. This recently happened when Canada Makes, Precision ADM, and Electra Meccanica Vehicles (EMV) partnered on an additive manufactured battery box end cap for an electric automobile.
“The Metal Additive Manufacturing Demonstration Program allowed EMV to start exploring metal additive manufacturing capabilities and I’m very excited to expand our working relationship with additive manufacturing technologies,” said Jerry Kroll CEO of EMV.
The Battery box cap part was manufactured using titanium (Ti64ELI) on Precision ADM’s EOS M290. “We thought titanium would be the best material for its strength to weight ratio,” said Martin Petrak, CEO and President Precision ADM. “It allowed a reduction of the wall thickness by half therefore reducing the weight while maintaining the parts strength and stiffness.”
“The Part was delivered to spec and installed on a prototype in less than two weeks,” stated Frank Defalco, Manager Canada Makes. “This project highlights two of the main appeals in adopting additive manufacturing. The time saved receiving a working metal prototype, which speeds up new products to market, and significant weight savings of parts when designed for additive manufacturing (DfAM).”
Canada Makes’ Metal Additive Manufacturing Demonstration program recently completed its third round of funding and is pleased to report that over 50 Canadian companies participated last year. A new round of funding is currently being negotiated for the coming fiscal year.
“Using our advanced training in DfAM from EOS, we are able to use these design rules to help clients save on the build times and material cost,” added Petrak. “Designing for Metal AM is new tool in the tool box for Advanced Digital Manufacturing, that more and more companies are now investing in.”
The Metal Additive Manufacturing Demonstration Program is funding by NRC-IRAP and is designed to help Canadian industries increase awareness and assist in understanding the advantages of the metal additive manufacturing (AM) technology. Canada Makes works with a group of AM experts who provide participating companies guidance of the advantages and business opportunities in terms of cost savings and efficiencies of AM.
Electra Meccanica strives to be the driving force behind sustainable transport by creating the compelling mass market, all-electric SOLO. The vehicle will make the urban commute more efficient, cost-effective and environmentally friendly. The SOLO’s futuristic design is powered by a 16.1 kWhs lithium ion battery and the drive system is tuned for higher speed and mobility. With a range of 160kms (100 miles), and a top speed of 130kms/h (80 mph), the SOLO delivers superior performance and spirited driving.