CHATTANOOGA — A $22 million laboratory that Volkswagen of America has opened right here as a part of its large meeting complicated seeks to pace up excessive testing of battery packs for its upcoming line of domestically produced electrical automobiles.
The 32,000-square-foot facility is considered one of 4 such testing facilities globally for VW’s German mother or father, which is transitioning to an all-EV lineup over the following decade, together with one in Braunschweig, Germany, and two in China. VW Chattanooga is anticipated to start salable manufacturing of ID4 electrical compact crossovers subsequent month, which VW of America CEO Scott Keogh mentioned ought to exponentially improve availability of the car at U.S. dealerships this year.
The Battery Engineering Lab right here, which can make use of about 30 engineers, features a local weather chamber to test EVs in excessive warmth and chilly in addition to a “shaker table” able to simulating a year’s value of on-road jostling and abuse in every week’s time. It additionally permits for thermal-shock testing, wherein battery packs are uncovered to excessive warmth and chilly occasions, to assess sturdiness, in addition to water-immersion and abrasion testing to simulate harsh environments.
The lab will initially research and validate the lithium ion battery packs getting used to energy the domestically produced ID4s and different EVs constructed on VW’s international electrical structure, referred to as MEB, the automaker mentioned. Other rising battery applied sciences can be examined and validated for automotive use sooner or later.
“With our new Battery Engineering Lab as the new center for battery know-how, we can react quickly to the fast-paced EV market by applying data to our local engineering and assembly,” Wolfgang Demmelbauer-Ebner, VW of America’s chief engineering officer, mentioned in a written assertion.