Difficulties and solutions in manufacturing water-cooled motor cases for new energy commercial trucks

June 8, 2024

Manufacturing water-cooled motor cases for new energy commercial trucks is indeed a challenging task, especially considering their unique design requirements and the limitations of traditional casting processes.

The following key technical challenges are faced:

  • Large size and thin wall structure:
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    The motor housing needs to have a large size to meet the high power requirements of commercial trucks, while the wall thickness must be thin enough to ensure light weight and heat dissipation efficiency.
    Thin-wall designs make machining and fabrication difficult, as the material tends to deform or crack in the thin-walled portion.
  • Complex spiral cooling water channels:
    Water-cooled motor housings are designed with spiral cooling water channels between the inner and outer walls for improved thermal efficiency.
    The spiral shape and dimensions of the water channels need to be precisely controlled to ensure even distribution of cooling water flow and maximum heat dissipation area.
  • Waterway width verification:
    Waterway width is a critical parameter that affects cooling effectiveness and needs to be verified repeatedly to determine the optimal width.
    Poorly designed waterway widths can lead to poor cooling or clogged waterways.
  • Rapid Delivery and Design Iteration:
    To validate the design structure and respond to market changes in a timely manner, manufacturers are required to be able to deliver samples quickly.
    Designs may need to be iterated based on test results or customer feedback, which requires rapid response and timely updates to model data.
  • Limitations of traditional casting processes:
    Conventional casting processes have many problems in producing large, thin-walled and products with complex internal structures.
    Low product yield because shrinkage, distortion and defects are difficult to control during the casting process.
    High cost, because the casting mould manufacturing cost and time investment is large.
    Long cycle time, as it usually takes a long time from mould manufacturing to product validation and production.
Water-cooled motor housing for new energy commercial trucks

These challenges are addressed with the 3D printing sand mould casting process:

Rapid delivery:

  • The 3DP sand casting process enables product prototyping in a short period of time through rapid manufacturing of sand moulds.
  • By closing the mould, rapid delivery of the motor housing can be achieved, facilitating design verification and customer confirmation.

Design Iteration:

  • The 3DP sand casting process supports rapid model iteration, allowing designers to quickly adjust model data based on test results or customer feedback.
  • Rapid prototyping solutions are provided through mould fitting. This technology allows complex shapes to be created quickly and accurately, which helps to shorten product development cycles and improve design efficiency and market responsiveness.

Complex internal structures:

  • The 3DP sand casting process can accurately create complex waterway structures without additional machining steps.
  • This lowers production costs and reduces errors caused by additional machining.

Material selection:

  • The 3DP sand casting process can use a variety of materials, including metals and composites, to meet different performance requirements.
  • The right material can be selected based on the specific application scenario of the product to get the best balance of performance and cost.

Quality Control:

  • The 3DP sand casting process allows for quality control during the production process, which helps to improve product qualification rates.
  • The quality and consistency of products can be further improved by optimising printing parameters and post-processing processes.

In summary, 3DP sand casting process is an effective solution to solve the difficulties in manufacturing water-cooled motor shells for new energy commercial trucks. It can rapidly deliver product prototypes, support design iterations, manufacture thin-walled parts with complex internal structures, and help improve product quality and production efficiency. As 3DP technology continues to advance, it will continue to play an important role in the future, driving technological innovation and market development in the new energy commercial truck industry.

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Longyuan AFS Co., Ltd. is a leading provider of 3D printing equipment and manufacturing services in China, providing high-quality R&D pilot production and rapid manufacturing services for small-lot, multi-species and complex structure metal products based on the integrated technology of "3D printing, casting, machining and inspection".

  • Email: sales@lyafs.com
  • Phone:+86 13299265105
  • Add: No 7 Yudong Road, B Area, Tianzhu Konggang Industrial Park, Shunyi District, Beijing, China.
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