Lexus, the luxury vehicle division of Toyota, has unveiled its LF-ZC and LF-ZL battery electric vehicle prototype at the Japan Mobility Show which is held in Tokyo on 25th October 2023. This luxury brand of car will use Tesla's “Giga Casting” production process in their next generation car models which will be available in the market from 2026. Giga cast is a very powerful production technology of Tesla which will be elaborate in this article.
What is Gigacasting?
Gigacasting word coming from Giga Press which is actually an innovation to use aluminum die casting machines at large scale. It was first introduced by Idra Group of Italy then Tesla used this technology at their factories in different countries. These big machines have the ability to produce large scale aluminum parts which is a great innovation in the auto manufacturing industry. Giga Casting process will be the future of the automotive industry which will change the idea of traditional manufacturing methods.
How does Giga Casting work?
Giga casting working process starts by forcing a shot of molten aluminum into a reusable mold. In the mold the aluminum is shaped into a finished part then it is released after getting cooled. Before the next cycle the opened mold is cooled and then cleaned by robots. After a 2 minute break the next round starts for the next cycle. The parts are trimmed to be the perfect size then measured and checked to get it finished.
What are the benefits of Giga Casting?
Gigacasting process is able to reduce complexity of manufacturing auto parts in a single machine lineup where in typical process need to shape a huge number of metal sheets and then need to weld them to make a car body part.
Giga casting process also reduces the time and costing of manufacture at a time increasing the efficiency of the production lineup. It also eliminates the common failure points to assemble the parts. A strong structural integrity happened in the giga casting process by reducing potential mistakes.
After approval of the casting pattern the next casting production started and finished without any error that ensures a high quality product. The strong bond of parts increases the strength and reliability of the products and it will increase the trust factor of customers.
What are the challenges of Giga Casting?
Giga casting can make a revolution in the car manufacturing industry and the overall impact will be good in car designs. But there are some challenges of giga press system which are:
As the size of this machine is big that's why repairing challenges can be faced by the people. Also after a time period it can be difficult for this giga casting process to take a huge number of production challenges.
The initial investment of installing a giga casting unit can be huge. Also need proper place, equipment and facilities with skilled manpower to operate it.
What is the cycle time of Giga Casting?
In the giga casting process a cycle of production needs only 120 seconds, which means in one hour it can complete 30 finished castings. Giga casting is a die casting technology by giving a series of high pressures to aluminum. More than 100 kg of molten aluminum placed into the cold chamber casting mold with 10 meters per second velocity. In 24 hours it can produce nearly 500 castings.
Who is the supplier of Tesla Giga casting?
Idra, an Italian machine manufacturer, is the supplier of Testa Giga casting machines. Idra is one of the dominant players in the die casting machine industry. The company was established in 1946 by Adamo Pasotti. Since then they have been producing different types of die casting machines for different companies. In 2008 LK Technology Holding Ltd acquired this company under their L.K. Machinery holding. At first in 2020 Tesla purchased two big size casting machines from Idra.
For different positive reasons Giga Casting process will be the game changer in the EV production industry. With its simple production lineup, reducing cost and increasing the production efficiency this technology will be the favorite choice of the automakers very soon. The primary cost of machine purchasing and installing is higher than the traditional process but for its ease of use it will be the future of the automotive industry. Lexus and Toyota took a good initiative by using giga casting technology in their next generation EV car. We will wait to see the impact of giga casting in their LF-ZC and LF-ZL electric cars in 2026.