Comau delivers high-volume electric drive assembly line to Geely Veremt to double its automation rate
Comau, a member of Stellantis, has developed and deployed an automated e-drive assembly line for Geely Automobile Holdings at its Geely Veremt plant in Ningbo (China), for the end-to-end assembly of the electric motor, gearbox and inverter. Designed in close collaboration with the Geely team, the complete line uses a flexible automatic production system to assemble the permanent magnet motor rotors, gearboxes and electronics drives, in addition to automated quality control and testing.
Comau Geely Veremt electric drive assembly line
The innovative solution increases the plant’s automation rate from 40% to 80% while delivering a full-scale production capacity of 120,000 assembly jobs per year.
Due to the complexity of the project, the joint technical team worked in close synergy during the entire process. Comau also leveraged its 45+ years of experience in powertrain assembly when combining best-practice technology and process innovations to achieve Geely’s high-volume production targets.
Using multiple robots to install the motor rotors, the automated line also features 3D vision positioning and guidance, automatic high-speed magnet installation, automatic injection of rotor cores and the automatic dual-position dynamic balance correction, magnetization and more.
The electric drive line includes advanced three-in-one assembly such as motor stator casing, thermal sleeve, motor static testing, motor dynamic testing, automatic bearing feeding and pressing, automatic bolt feeding and tightening, and the automatic measurement and selection of gaskets.
Since its initiation, Comau has dedicated significant design resources to the project, including 20 engineers who completed the design phase in just 4 months. The project execution team also overcame additional challenges due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and product optimization changes, delivering the line in just over 12 months.
Due to the quick and targeted response to post-delivery modification requests, mass production was officially launched in late 2021.
According to IHS Markit, electric vehicles are expected to comprise 60-80% of all new car sales in 2050. The forecast has prompted automakers to look for ways to automate the assembly of e-axle drives, which combine electric motors, transmissions and power electronics in a single unit. This has created opportunities for industrial automation companies such as Comau.
The successful delivery of this project has provided a strong production guarantee for the manufacturing of Geely’s pure-electric vehicles. It has also enriched Comau’s design and manufacturing experience with electric drive automatic production lines, which will be leveraged in the implementation of subsequent projects.
Comau is a worldwide leader in delivering advanced industrial automation products and systems. Its portfolio includes technology and systems for electric, hybrid and traditional vehicle manufacturing, industrial robots, collaborative and wearable robotics, autonomous logistics, dedicated machining centers and interconnected digital services and products able to transmit, elaborate and analyze machine and process data.