In the decades just ahead of us, electric vehi- cles will overtake the automotive industry. Already, California has ordered that by 2035 all new passenger vehicles sold in the state must be all-electric. The recently unveiled American Jobs Plan proposes $174 billion of incentives, rebates, and investments to pushthe production and adoption of electric vehicles. Also,General Motors has proposed an end to the productionof all diesel and gasoline-powered cars by 2035 and ashift of its entire fleet to electric vehicles. These arejust a few recent headlines as the world looks forwardto - and automakers make plans for - a greener, moreelectric future.
INTERNAL COMBUSTION ENGINES VS. EVS
With this shift to electric vehicles, the forging industry has seen both negative and positive projections. Theproduction of electric vehicles, and the designs for theirparts, is significantly different from what is involved inproducing petroleum-powered vehicles. Internal combustion engine vehicles have a few design limitations due totheir method of power generation, which requires moreinternal components.
Heat and Cooling. Internal combustion engines(ICEs) generate high heat, while electric vehicles produce comparatively little. This heat needs to be dissipatedquickly to avoid overheating, requiring various manifolds,tubes, hoses, assemblies, and shafts to efficiently and rapidly direct coolant in and around the engine.
Meanwhile, the cooling systems on electric vehicles are simpler and require fewer components to direct coolant efficiently.
Constant RPMs. A standard engine requires a certain frequency of combustion, known as the “Power Band,” withinthe engine to keep the motor running. As such, the vehiclerequires complex gearboxes to maintain a certain range ofRPMs while allowing the wheels to turn at any desired speed.Electric motors can turn at incredibly high RPMs (upwards of10,000 RPM) but do not have a traditional power band. Thismeans that electric motors require only a single-gear “reducer” instead of a standard multi-gear transmission.
Fluids. The internal-combustion process has a lot offast-moving internal parts that, without proper lubrication,can fail very prematurely and completely wreck an engine.Electric vehicles do not require engine oil and often do not in
20 FORGINGMAGAZINE.COM I FALL 2021
Multiple design andmanufacturing factorscontribute to costadvantages for automakersincorporating forgingsin their electric-vehicleprograms.
Kerry Kubatzke EV designs require significantly fewer internal metal components than ICE vehicles.
THE BENEFITS OF FORGEDALUMINUM PARTS FOR EVS