The technology group Rheinmetall has received an order to deliver a functional prototype of a propane-powered thermal module. The novel thermal module, which was developed in the Sensors and Actuators division, enables various operating modes in conjunction with the natural refrigerant propane (R290). The advantage over chemical refrigerants in this performance class lies in their extreme efficiency and performance in terms of the available cooling capacity as well as their environmental friendliness. The order was placed by a large European automotive supplier. In addition to the delivery of the module, the order also includes support for further functional development by the customer.
By delivering the functional model, Rheinmetall supports the customer in setting up a demonstrator vehicle to demonstrate the functionality of a new type of thermal management system. In addition to the air conditioning of the driver’s cab, this system is also intended to control the temperature, i.e. H. take over the heating and cooling of the entire drive train including the electric motor, traction battery, inverter and charging device. The functionality of switching between the individual operating modes is provided by the customer. The thermal module itself takes on two functions within the system. It either increases the temperature level of the coolant when the components need to be heated or it removes heat when cooling is required.
The thermal module is designed as a compact system. The design used was carried out with a minimum of refrigerant pipes. This compact design makes integration into the infrastructure of the test vehicle much easier and reduces the refrigerant charge. An 800V electric refrigerant compressor is used as a compressor to match the vehicle’s electrical system. The use of the natural refrigerant propane in conjunction with the reduced filling quantity of the system makes an overall effective contribution to climate protection.
Refrigerant compressors suck in a gaseous refrigerant in a closed circuit and compress it to the specified working pressure. If designed appropriately, the compressors can ensure high levels of efficiency with a long service life and low operating noise. Depending on the process control, heat and cold can be generated very efficiently, which makes the refrigerant compressor an important tool for minimizing CO 2 emissions.
Thanks to Rheinmetall’s global positioning and high level of development expertise, technologies can be developed specifically and precisely for a wide range of applications. The global production network and worldwide proximity to customers make Rheinmetall a competent and agile partner not only in the automotive industry, but increasingly also for industrial customers.