piab is a major manufacturer of industrial vacuum solutions, available via Firing Industries Ltd. Vacuum technology is particularly ideal for manufacturing battery cells. As production of electric vehicles increases, the automotive sector is boosting production of lithium-ion batteries. An innovative industrial leader with decades of experience in vacuum technology, the piab team has developed various vacuum-handling solutions for quick, flawless, and reliable battery-cell and module production.
Suction cups, grippers, and more
One option available is a line of mark-free suction cups, which handles electrodes that are placed between Z-folded separator sheets in an alternating fashion. These units enable a quick process of stapling cell material for pouch and prismatic cells by providing a strong hold. The piab piGRIP series is easy to configure and ideal for packaging pouch cells into blister trays for shipping.
The manufacturer has also developed a modular, configurable gripper for unpacking pouch cells at the battery-module production line respectively. Equipped with durable, renowned DURAFLEX cups, integrated COAX-based piCHIP with the newest SX ejector generation, blow-off, check valve, and vacuum switch, each of these grippers takes the pouch cells from blister packages at the process line and puts them on a conveyor belt, from which robots pick them up to build them into the module. Firing Industries also offers the piab custom-line battery gripper, which handles explosive pouch cells with high position accuracy and utmost care.
Because pouches, prismatic cells, and heat shields are extremely thin and hard to pick up individually, piab developed a modular, configurable gripper with a foam surface for handling the gap fillers between these materials. This handling solution reliably picks up one sheet at a time, and SX ejectors generate the vacuum again, while equipping it with a blow-off valve.
To keep pouch cells upright while they are integrated into battery-module housing, piab has created a rectangular foam-based gripper. The foam has a special vacuum cavity structure to hold to ten cells upright in the casket until they are fixated with a tolerance level of two millimetres or less.
To learn more, contact Firing Industries’ application-sales engineers at [email protected] or (877) 688-0974.