3. Flexible Production Technologies
Hybrid and electric-vehicle sales are steadily growing and expected to account for 30% of vehicle sales by 2025, according a 2018 report by J.P. Morgan. That’s why you need production technologies that can help keep up with demand.
If you’re an electric-vehicle start-up, you need drivetrain operations that can transition from low-volume to high-volume production based on demand. For example, an assembly cell system concept allows you to build flexible, highly standardized assembly lines using machines that can run semi-automated for current needs, then transition to fully automated later when production ramps up.
If you’re a mature automaker, you might need to create more flexible and modular powertrain production operations that can support both traditional and hybrid vehicles. Pre-engineered integrated automation solutions can help create fast and flexible powertrain operations.
An automation-based design and configuration solution such as the Rockwell Automation Production Performance Builder (PPB), helps enable more flexible manufacturing through faster line reconfiguration. Normally, this process would take a large amount of time, but by applying this new solution, powertrain lines can be rebalanced and reconfigured within a day.
For powertrain assembly plants, a configurable line can help achieve optimal line balance even as you deal with changing technologies, more production models and fluctuating capacity. This new addition translates to lower overall operational costs and can help reduce production bottlenecks. Also, for powertrain equipment suppliers, a design and configuration tool helps achieve design repeatability and appropriate system sizing from the outset.
Hybrid and all-electric vehicles will someday constitute most cars on our roadways. However, we can’t predict how consumer preferences will evolve or how technologies like batteries and fuel cells will change before we reach that day.
With a connected plant strategy, scalable software and flexible technologies in hand, you can build flexible and scalable powertrain or drivetrain production operations that can adjust to future technology and demand changes. This will help make the road to an all-electric future a smooth one.
Learn more about how Rockwell Automation can help improve your electric vehicle production.
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