Interview: Chandrasekar Krishnamurthy

Global Engineering Director, Systems, Software and Engineering Excellence at BorgWarner

BorgWarner Charging Forward Towards Carbon Neutrality with its Advanced eProducts

July 02, 2024. By Aishwarya

BorgWarner has integrated its core power electronics product portfolio in their PowerDrive Systems business unit, states Chandrasekar Krishnamurthy, Global Engineering Director, Systems, Software and Engineering Excellence, BorgWarner in his recent interview with Aishwarya Saxena, Energetica India.

Que: Tell us about BorgWarner’s key product portfolio in electric vehicle segment and what is BorgWarner's electrification strategy for achieving carbon neutrality?

Ans: BorgWarner announced its electrification business strategy “Charging Forward” in March 2021. That was right after the closing of the Delphi transaction, which closed in November 2020, and the company has since moved pretty rapidly.

Since then, BorgWarner has done great progress organically and inorganically. We've launched great products organically. We have also closed the spin-off of PHINIA in July 2023. So, it was only appropriate to update our company strategy to align with how we are moving forward as a company.

We are now focusing on eProduct Growth and Profitability:

• eProduct growth: $10+ Billion in eProduct sales by 2027
• eProduct profitability: eProduct adjusted operating margin ~7% by 2027
• Maximize foundational value: Maintain double-digit margins for foundational products

We supply our customer with the entire product chain, from grid to wheel:

• Charging & Energy Storage
• Drivetrain
• Power Electronics
• Thermal Management

To realize our carbon neutrality goal, we are for example investing in energy-efficient processes in our plants, renewable energy sources, and dedicated resources within our businesses to drive action. Our operations are utilizing our decarbonization toolbox developed in 2021 to implement best practices for reducing energy consumption, producing zero-emissions energy, and purchasing zero-emissions energy. We are investing in onsite and purchased-offsite renewable energy at our facilities. In 2022, 23% of our electricity use was from renewable sources, significantly more than 3.5% in 2021, as we progress toward our net-zero goal. 2,017 MWh were generated onsite and 232,923 MWh were from purchased renewable electricity in 2022.

Que: What is the eTVD system developed by BorgWarner for battery electric vehicles (BEVs) and how does the eTVD system improve vehicle stability and dynamic performance?

Ans: BorgWarner’s eTVD can precisely and quickly calculate, predict and control vehicle behavior across a wide range of situations. The high performing eTVD offers a 3-in-1 system, replacing the differential and featuring both torque vectoring and an on-demand disconnect function. In contrast to brake-based systems, torque vectoring prevents unnecessary brake interventions, therefore reducing harshness and vibration. This also leads to less wear and tear on brakes and tires, with the added benefit of lower particle emissions. BorgWarner’s eTVD systems offer high-level software and controls that can be customized by OEMs to align with their own platform needs and specific brand characteristics.

The higher weight of BEVs can reduce agility, but BorgWarner’s eTVD systems enable a much lighter feel of the vehicle while increasing overall safety. Smart design and intuitive software minimize the risk of undesired driving characteristics and enables superior traction regardless of road and weather conditions. Torque response is instantaneous in challenging and demanding scenarios, ensuring smooth, safe rides.

Que: Kindly shed some light on the integration process of power electronics into BorgWarner's existing electrified systems.

Ans: BorgWarner has integrated its core power electronics product portfolio in their PowerDrive Systems business unit. The power electronics portfolio comprises of Inverters, On-board chargers, DCDC converters, integrated solutions like Integrated Drive Modules and Integrated Charging and Conversion systems, Battery management as well as components to enable vertical integration like SiC Viper Power Switches, Power Modules, Heat Sinks and ASICs. The portfolio is further enabled and enhanced by software as a differentiator which offers significant benefits through advanced controls systems by optimizing system efficiency, performance and cost as well as an enriched feature set for connectivity and data.

Que: What role does partnerships and acquisitions play in helping BorgWarner improve the quality of its lineup and any plans for the same this year?

Ans: BorgWarner has traditionally grown its portfolio organically as well as inorganically through M&A. In February of this year, we announced the signage of an international strategic relationship agreement with FinDreams Battery for LFP battery packs. Regarding future plans, we unfortunately cannot comment on that and ask for your kind understanding.

Que: What are the features of BorgWarner's first integrated electric drive module (iDM)?

Ans: The compact BorgWarner integrated drive module consists of electric motor, inverter and gearbox. Its platform offers high integration and efficiency, and covers power requirements from 100kW to 350kW with peak wheel torque up to 6000Nm. The power module for the 800V SiC inverter uses BorgWarner's proven double-sided water-cooling Viper module technology, with reduced semiconductor size and increased efficiency. With the proven application of the patented Viper, higher reliability and adaptability are ensured.

Que: What role does BorgWarner's patented high voltage hairpin winding technology play in its motors?

Ans: The market demand for various concepts is currently highly heterogeneous and is expected to continue in this diversity over the coming decade. Hairpin technology is projected to continue dominating as it offers the highest efficiency according to WLTP.

The motors in BorgWarner’s HVH series are available in multiple versions with various configurations of different lengths, cooling methods, and winding options, either as a complete motor with housing or as a rotor-stator unit. The product portfolio starts with an outer diameter of 146 mm (HVH146) and a peak power of 90 kW. The medium-size and power range are covered by several variants of the HVH180 with peak powers up to 190 kW. For applications requiring higher power, BorgWarner offers several versions of the HVH220 with a peak power of 350 kW. At the top end of the product range for passenger car applications is the high-performance version with an outer diameter of 264 mm (HVH264) and a peak power of 450 kW. Especially in the high-power versions, regulated oil cooling is used for the rotor, where the cooling medium is brought close to the permanent magnets. This proximity to the magnets is crucial for continuous power and also allows the use of magnets with lower rare earth element requirements. The HVH320 is a novel development for applications requiring high torque at low speeds. This new HVH320 platform, launching in 2024, will be produced in three versions with maximum power/maximum torque of 1280 Nm/485 kW, 1500 Nm/525 kW, and 1650 Nm/575 kW. The motor features innovative wire insulation (single-layer polyetheretherketone) meeting the highest quality standards, as well as immersion cooling of the winding heads to deliver the highest possible continuous torque. Fully bonded laminated core packages in the stator and rotor ensure high efficiency. The end winding and stator are designed to provide sealing against a thermal protection cover that directs oil flow.

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