Freudenberg steps into the fast growing Chinese market for electric vehicles

Shanghai, February 13, 2012. The Freudenberg Group, an international family company, offering its customers technically challenging product solutions and services steps into the fast growing Chinese market for electric vehicles. The company`s special coating for battery separators helps to prevent possible short circuits in lithium-ion batteries, which is expected to make e-mobility safer. As the world’s largest manufacturer of nonwovens, world market leader in sealing and vibration control technology, and a specialist for filters and mechatronic products, Freudenberg intends to become the leading component manufacturer for this highly promising future-oriented technology. The company is all set to tap the market for battery technology being used in electric vehicles in the Chinese market.

China has implemented a new vehicle tax law on January 1, 2012. The new law eliminates or reduces taxes on vehicles using alternative energy. This new tax law is seen as the reinforcement to China’s 12th Five-Year-Plan, in which it is mentioned that China will focus on the development of plug-in hybrid electric vehicles, pure electric vehicles and fuel cell automobile technologies. As to the industry, Chinese government asked the manufacturers to improve the technology of energy saving, environmental protection and safety. Freudenberg believes that the demand for battery or energy storage technology used in electric vehicles will continue to increase in 2012.

Freudenberg has developed a separator that increases the intrinsic safety of battery cells and thus helps to prevent possible explosions. For this purpose, a wafer-thin polyester fabric is coated with a paste. The product is a result of indigenous innovation at the company’s R&D facilities worldwide. With the networked knowledge and the experience of group companies across the world, Freudenberg develops separators, seals, filter-systems and mechatronics solutions based on flexible printed circuits for lithium-ion batteries. As a result, Freudenberg is one of the few companies worldwide to offer such a comprehensive range of components for this technology.

As a group, Freudenberg believes in quality, research and development which is being demonstrated in the production of an ultra-thin homogeneous fabric and the special coating technology. Freudenberg nonwovens products are being well accepted and used as the standard equipment in the separators of nickel metal hydride batteries.

Apart from the separators, Freudenberg products for electric cars include Simmerrings®, flat seals and O-rings. The temperatures in lithium-ion batteries used in such vehicles are high, making cooling especially important. Freudenberg has developed special seal materials for the various coolants that may be used. In addition, lithium-ion batteries consist of a package of cells for which Freudenberg provides frame seals. For the connection of batteries to vehicle systems, Freudenberg has developed elastic components that replace rigid screwed joints making the connections safer and more reliable.

Freudenberg’s automotive sector leadership – 70 different products found in any car

In 2010, the automotive industry accounted for roughly 40 percent of Freudenberg’s overall sales. Freudenberg has a comprehensive portfolio of more than 300 different products ranging from Simmerrings® or encoders, nonwovens for car headliners and carpets, flexible printed circuits, cabin air and engine intake air filters, specialty lubricants and release agents to vibration engineering products that reduce vehicle noise and vibrations. On an average, some 70 different Freudenberg products can be found in any car built today.