KUKA and Webasto revolutionize battery production

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Experts from KUKA and Webasto discussed the mobility of the future in KUKA’s digital press conference series “Join us for a coffee…”. The focus was on intelligent automation in electromobility.

At the beginning of the virtual discussion round, Dr. Joachim Döhner, Battery Senior Director Global Sales, KUKA, and Christian Gallner, Director Plant Schierling, Webasto, spoke about the mobility transformation and the resulting strategic realignment of the two partners.

Christian Gallner, said: “Our dual strategy involves, on the one hand, consistently strengthening our existing core business areas of the roof and thermal and, on the other, developing new business areas that fit our competence profile. The focus here is on electromobility. In addition to high-voltage heaters and battery systems, the product portfolio also includes charging solutions for private and automobile manufacturers.”

Dr. Joachim Döhner, Battery Senior Director Global Sales, KUKA: “The further development of electromobility is a forward-looking topic and batteries from Germany and Europe will contribute to climate-friendly mobility. We will meet the resulting increasing requirements for speed, flexibility, profitability and value creation with modular and automated manufacturing and logistics processes.”

KUKA and Webasto have already taken the first joint step: The realization of a production system for battery systems that ensures the essential components of Industrie 4.0 as well as extremely versatile production. At the Schierling plant of Webasto in the district of Regensburg, Bavaria, production of battery packs for a European bus manufacturer has already started. With the highly flexible Multi-Product-Line, the partners have created one of the most modern production systems for battery systems.

Christian Gallner, Director Plant Schierling, Webasto, said: “Since the end of 2019, we have been able to produce up to 40,000 battery systems per year. Our technology plant in Schierling is now a blueprint for other Webasto battery plants, such as in Dangjin, Korea.”

Dr. Döhner, explained: “With the Multi-Product-Line at Webasto, we have realized a production system that both consistently implements the requirements of Industrie 4.0 in the context of industrial production and ensures the decisive competitive advantage.”

Gallner, said: “With regard to the creation of the line, it was important for us to have a high level of protection for the manual workers; on the other hand, we required robust automation solutions for our core processes. With KUKA, we have an experienced partner from the region that serves exactly these requirements.”

Dr. Joachim Döhner, Battery Senior Director Global Sales at KUKA, said: “The joint long-term cooperation with Webasto has made this great and forward-looking project possible. We are proud to be able to contribute to the energy concept of the future – electromobility.”

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