Travel light and safe with igus e-chains29.09.2014
Travel light and safe with igus e-chains
igus energy chain systems are increasingly being used in cars
With the increasing electrification of cars, so too is the demand for moving energy supply systems to reliably guide and protect. igus, the plastics expert, deals with all the challenges that energy supply systems bring with them in vehicles. In addition to its standard range of lightweight plastic chains, igus can also give customised solutions for every customer.
Whether in cars, commercial vehicles or special vehicles, the demands on energy supply solutions are becoming increasingly complex. The number of cables is steadily increasing, as is the required number of cycles. To protect them and optimise their service life, energy supply systems are increasingly being used. The applications are many and varied; from seat adjusters or sliding doors and tailgates to adjustable headlights and the power supply to entertainment systems. All these applications have very limited space for the energy supply system yet must offer absolute reliability. Replacement of chains and/or cables would result in complex issues, for example where panels must be removed.
"With its plastic plain bearings, igus has had a strong presence in the automotive industry for many years and has been certified according to the standard ISO/TS 16949:2009. This demonstrates our expertise in this area," says Johannis Zournatzis, Industry Manager for automotive e-chainsystems at igus GmbH. "The large number of cables in a vehicle must also operate continuously in moving applications. In order to be able to guarantee their safe use, we provide carefully matched chains and cables as well as expert advice." Suitable lightweight and compact energy chain systems are available, such as the easy-to-open E2 micro or one-piece E1, a kind of strip that can be easily shortened and lengthened. "Since we want to find the ideal solution for each customer, we offer customised solutions using close collaboration, in the event that the standard repertoire doesn't suffice," says Zournatzis. This means the need-based development of chain types, sizes, bending radii and accessories, even custom-made new moulds for injection moulding. In the test lab in Cologne, spread over a floor area of 1750 square metres, special solutions for long-term use in motion are also developed and tested.
Safe use and simple installation
The igus energy chains protect cables during operation and are also easy to install, due to the design of connectors and strain relief elements. Cables can be inserted easily due to the easy-to-open chain designs. Energy chains protect cables by preventing accidental kinking or damage. This makes igus energy supply systems in the car not only safe, but also simple.