Freudenberg aggressive on ‘new mobility' solutions
MOTORINDIA|August 2020
Freudenberg aggressive on ‘new mobility' solutions
Freudenberg has been active for the last couple of decades in developing future technologies to propel ‘new mobility’. The company is known for its robust research and development at a global level which has given the world innovative solutions to support four drive technologies, including improving internal combustion engines, hybrid solutions, pure electric vehicles and those equipped with fuel cells. Sarada Vishnubhatla speaks with the heads of the company’s three different divisions, namely, sealing and filtration technologies as well as the lubrication business to know more about the journey on the path of innovation
Sarada Vishnubhatla

Freudenberg Sealing Technologies

It is a leading supplier of advanced materials and products for customers working on automotive, industrial and alternate drivetrain applications. The company applies more than 150 years of engineering and materials expertise to its strategy of researching, developing and introducing innovative product and process solutions. It is focused on serving its customers’ most progressive or cutting-edge industrial opportunities and needs. Founded on its development of the Simmerring® radial shaft seal in 1929, Freudenberg Sealing Technologies has continuously expanded its industrial seals and component portfolio to include a range of technology solutions.

These address critical issues like performance, power, friction, emissions and material compatibility. In addition to offering a broad range of high-quality, engineered sealing solutions, the company also works collaboratively with customers on the design and validation of custom sealing systems. In this interview, Jetinder Kumar Nath, Senior General Manager (Marketing), Freudenberg-NOK Sealing Technologies, elaborates about the company’s products and strategies. “Currently, we are in the mode of creating awareness in the still evolving market in India and also globally. As part of our strategy, we are focusing on new developments because at some point in the future, the usage of IC engines will reduce and our products relevant for those will also have less demand,” he says.

Catering to New Mobility

“In the e-mobility segment, our new range of products includes gaskets which can seal the battery stack with the chassis. Freudenberg has developed a special way of manufacturing them which otherwise would need big machines to build them. We have developed smaller machines that can be expanded to take up the full size which is an innovative product to support our customers. Though it is not currently manufactured in India because the demand is not yet there, we are creating more awareness about its usage and benefits. We are also developing not only components of the battery stack but the stack itself.”

Creating a Niche

“Our USP is that we work on the basic materials and ultimately manufacture the whole product. Our materials meet the highest requirements of safety and performance. For example, the heat shield for the battery stack which we have developed is made of a special material that offers insulation so that heat from one battery cell does not get passed on to the other if in case of an explosion in the battery. Since these are chemicals that we are working with and temperature is a crucial parameter, the risk factor gets drastically reduced because of this special insulation.”

Future Technologies

“Globally, we are working on fuel cells and the vehicle manufacturers are working on both the batteries and the fuel cells as future technologies for e-mobility. Freudenberg is working on two key elements of the fuel cell stack – one the fuel cell itself while the other is the gas diffusion layer which allows reaction to happen between the molecules of hydrogen and oxygen. This, again, is an absolute new technology and a new product that we are currently creating awareness about. We are already supplying fuel cells for testing. FlixBus, a bus operator in Europe, offers long distance journeys and we have tied up with them, though it is a project that will pan for over the next couple of years.”

Moving in Tandem

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August 2020