DSM updates lab facilities for latest EV battery insulation tests

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DSM Engineering Materials, a multinational supplier to the automotive industry, is expanding its comparative tracking index (CTI) test laboratory to meet the next-generation, high-voltage requirements of its customers. By installing the advanced CTI test capabilities, the company says its is creating a new level of support for manufacturers looking to increase the voltage of EV batteries safely and shorten charging times.

Jud Gibson, global vice president of sales and marketing at DSM Engineering Materials, said, “To introduce such an advanced electrical test laboratory enabling CTI characterization is a key milestone for DSM and an industry first. We’re proud to be using this technology to make electric cars safer, lighter and more sustainable – not only for today’s customers, but also for generations to come.”

The company notes that long charging times remain a key barrier to the wider adoption of electric vehicles (EVs). Shortening these charging times requires higher battery voltages up to 1,000V or above. To enable this ultra-fast charging at the right safety and reliability levels, manufacturers will need to use insulation plastics with better resistance to high voltages.

To meet these challenges and in line with its EV-focused automotive strategy, DSM has expanded its CTI test laboratory with equipment to validate tracking resistance to voltages up to 1,500V AC and 1,000V DC. High-voltage component manufacturers have apparently shown significant interest in collaborating with DSM on this testing for voltages between 600V and 1,500V.

Franz Janson, principal product development engineer, PEE Global Automotive Resin Material Platform, at TE Connectivity, added, “We are very happy to see that DSM is investing in strong materials as well as the right test laboratory. We look forward to cooperating more closely to understand the impact of high-voltage exposure on material properties and to implement suitable materials for our next-generation high-voltage systems.”

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Lawrence has been covering engineering subjects – with a focus on motorsport technology – since 2007 and has edited and contributed to a variety of international titles. Currently, he oversees Automotive Powertrain Technology International and Professional Motorsport World magazines as editor.

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