The lifetime of batteries in electric vehicles is largely determined by the temperature management in the battery cells. This is because the cells heat up whenever large currents flow, both when charging and discharging the battery. In the manufacturing process of vehicle batteries, it must be ensured that the cells are thermally perfectly connected to the thermal management system. This is essentially done by using thermal conductive paste.
Camera systems adapted to the task at hand are used to monitor the automated process of applying the heat-conducting pastes.
In the area of pre-assembly of battery cells into stacks, quality control is usually carried out with fix mounted cameras and lighting (post-process). This is done directly after dispensing the paste. In the area of battery assembly, an Inline system (in-process) such as Cyclospotter II is predominantly used for the completion of high-voltage-accumulators due to the large number of applied beads. The main advantage here is that no additional cycle time is required for inspection.
Typically, the applied beads are subjected to strict quality control, checking the criteria of position, width and completeness. Where particularly special-quality requirements make it necessary, 3D image processing and laser triangulation sensors are used to acquire the volume of the thermal conducting material.