Scania announced two new investments in battery plant and lab to prepare a foundation for upcoming mass electrification.
The first is a highly automated battery assembly plant, adjacent to the chassis assembly plant in Södertälje, Sweden, where the company intends to produce modules and packs using battery cells from Northvolt's factory in Skellefteå, Sweden.
The construction of the initial 18,000-square meter facility will start in early 2021 with the aim to be fully operational by 2023. Over several years, the company intends to invest well over 1 billion SEK (€97.8 million / $116 million) in the project. The battery assembly facility will employ around 200 people.
Ruthger de Vries, Head of Production and Logistics at Scania said:
“Operating an on-site battery assembly plant is a prerequisite for large-scale production of electric vehicles and it also establishes Scania clearly as a part of the battery production value chain.”
The second project is a new 1,000-square meter battery laboratory, also at the Södertälje site. It should be completed by Spring 2021 and become fully operational by Autumn 2021. The total cost of this project is €15.5 million ($18.4 million).
"The laboratory will contain three 250-square metre test halls for battery cells, modules and packs. Adjacent to these halls, the laboratory will also have facilities for test sample preparation in order to improve work environment, safety and testing uptime."
"The laboratory will primarily focus on battery performance and lifespan evaluation in varying climate conditions from -40°C to 70°C. Scania’s engineers will examine and identify the best operational conditions for the battery with regard to, for example, temperature setpoint, state of charge window and charging power profile for tailored utilisation in optimising battery life and customer needs."
According to the manufacturer, the new laboratory will complement its smaller facility with a climatic chamber, opened earlier this year, which was used to test the performance of battery packs on operational electric trucks and buses without removing batteries.
On the charging front, Scania announced this month a partnership with Engie and its subsidiary EVBox, to provide charging solutions in 13 European countries (with a further expansion towards the end of 2021).
Together, they intend to offer fleets complementary solutions including depot charging, destination charging and on-route/public charging.