2D Parts Revolution – How Electrochemical Power Generation Devices Bring Economic Opportunities

Type de publication:

Conference Paper


Gerpisa colloquium, Puebla (2016)


In recent years, battery electric vehicles (BEVs) and fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs) have been attracting growing attentions as important countermeasures for global warming, air pollution and energy security issues which are caused by internal combustion engine vehicles (ICEVs). Since the electrochemical power generation devices (lithium ion batteries in LIBs and fuel cells in FCs) are powered by electricity and hydrogène, the devices do not emit CO2 or any polluting substances upon operations, and electricity and hydrogen are widely available from any renewable power sources and water electrolyzers, when they are needed.
Another merit for electrochemical power generation devices is a significant manufacturing cost reduction. This is considered to be caused by an inherent difference in the fundamental parts structures. While the internal combustion engine is composed of one thousand 3 dimensional (3D) high precision parts with many variations, the electrochemical power generation device is composed of one thousand 2 dimensional (2D) flat sheets with few variations.
Even though huge efforts have been made by the industry and the government, the economic growth of electric vehicles is still slow. This could be attributed to 1) limited availability of energies (or, electricity and hydrogen) and 2) the high entry price of electrochemical power generation devices. It is true that the entry price of a gasoline engine cannot be less expensive. Because the 3D parts production facility (which assembles high precision 3D parts with many variations) cannot be simple and small enough to be depreciated quickly. However, the 2D parts production facility (which assembles flat sheet materials with few variations) can be simple and small enough to be depreciated quickly as far as the facility is not contaminated by 3D parts manufacturing at all.
Typical 2D manufacturing technology can be seen in book or newspaper factories. The 2D manufacturing technology is called “the roll-to-roll process”. Basically it has a set of free rollers and only one winding motor at the end of the production line. The winding motor drives a flat sheet from a feed roll throughout manufacturing processes in the production line continuously. However, though any electrochemical power generation devices are made of flat sheets, they are not always supplied by a roll, but a cut sheet. We call it a contamination of 3D parts manufacturing into 2D parts manufacturing.
This research focuses on the cost reduction potential of electrochemical power generation devices by eliminating the contamination of 3D parts manufacturing into 2D parts manufacturing. A key factor price per weight which was estimated by the export statistics of Japan will be discussed to measure the cost reduction potential of 2D parts products. This research also focuses on the impact of 2D parts revolution to not only automotive industry but also broaden energy industries.

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