SinoScan UK newsletter article
Tesla Announce 12,000-Ton Giga Press to Cast Car Bodies in One Piece
As Tesla continues to grow and dominate the luxury electric car market, its internal manufacturing processes continue to become more efficient.
With the announcement of a 12,000-Ton giga press under development, Tesla will soon be able to cast car bodies in one piece – saving considerable time, money and resources during the manufacturing process.
Tesla currently utilises two 6,000-Ton giga presses to manufacture the front and back end of their Model Y, however, future models would be cast from just one piece.
Inspired by the same processes used to make toy cars, it’s estimated that Tesla’s 12,000-Ton giga press will reduce the number of robots in each of their factories by 300, in addition to enhancing quality control.
Currently, Tesla chassis comprise of 70 unique components, which need to be either glued, screwed or otherwise welded together.
Casting the Tesla shells in 1 piece will help achieve a 40% reduction in rear underbody manufacturing costs, which could be passed onto the end consumer, making Tesla vehicles more affordable.
How Will The Giga Press Work?
As with any press, a molten liquid is forced into a reusable mould, until it hardens. In Tesla’s case, the molten liquid is a specialised alloy, comprising 90% aluminium, 8.5% silicon and traces of copper, manganese, iron, zinc and titanium.
The specialised metal is heated to 850 degrees Celsius, at which point it is pumped into the mould along heated pipes, to help avoid it from setting. Before it reaches the mould, which is lubricated each time with soybean oil, it pases through a filter which removes any stubborn lumps larger than 25 micron meters.
Once the molten metal is inside the mould, a vacuum is created and the shell is cooled down to 50 degrees Celsius, where it is removed.
Once removed and cooled, excess metal is cut off and returned to the start of the process, to be used in another mould and the remaining shell is X-Rayed to ensure it complies with road and safety regulations.
The use of a press at this scale is an impressive feat and will place Tesla’s production ahead of most car manufacturers. If Tesla’s competitors fail to streamline their manufacturing processes soon, Tesla will see their share in the EV market continue to dominate.
We’re excited to see the effect the new Giga press will have on Tesla’s production and how Tesla’s competitors will react and adapt their manufacturing processes.