Solar flight with laser sintered battery cooling system
13 September 2016
Solar aviation requires pioneering achievements - in any discipline. Complex flow-optimized ducts of a cooling system are additively manufactured and allow a highly efficient battery cooling.
When it comes to new developments in solar aviation, often the boundaries of the possible and the technology will be explored. Each component must fulfill its function completely weight- and energy-optimized. Lightweight construction is a top priority.
Batteries with high energy density used in solar aviation must be optimally cooled. For this purpose, cold outside air is efficiently supplied to the battery. This is done with additively manufactured laser-sintered ventilation ducts. The lightweight constructed ventilation ducts feature wall thinkess between 0.5 and 0.6 mm and can not be manufactured conventionally. Many features and optimized flow geometries were integrated into a single component, so that the total eight airworthy ventilation parts could be produced only additively with selective laser sintering technology. At the parts are made from high-strength polyamide and must satisfy high demands. Not only tolerances of a few 0.1mm must be respected, but also the surface must be optimized for air flow. Additionally, a defined air tightness must be ensured. A laser-sintered 33 cm long air supply weighs only 129 grams.
Additive manufacturing plastics