In a quick update, Munro Live reports the status of the eagerly anticipated teardown of the Made-in-Texas (MIT) Tesla Model Y's structural battery pack.
As it turns out, the progress is slower than anticipated, because the task is much more difficult than expected.
During the first few days, the team was able to partially open the steel cover of the pack and see a massive block of Tesla's 4680-type cylindrical battery cells, glued together (and to the steel enclosure) by some kind of pink polyurethane, which happens to be extremely hard and durable.
Battery cells appear to be arranged in four rows, as shown in Tesla's videos, but there are no modules, as the entire concept is to create a structural battery in which cells are carrying forces.
According to Munro Live's Cory Steuben, "the repairability of this is essentially zero." That's strong input but also expected because it's a structural pack, envisioned to last the entire life of the vehicle.
Secondly, from other Sandy Munro videos, the glued battery blocks (like in the case of 2170) appear to be very reliable. The third thing is that even in the case of a conventional battery, the repair or replacement of modules might be costly (work on a high voltage system, new sealing, etc.).
During the teardown process, the team takes a lot of safety precautions due to the high voltage (even if partially discharged). From a research perspective, it's also important to not destroy too much.
In other words, the task is not easy and we will have to wait a little bit longer for the results.
Some might ask what about the recycling of an old battery if it's so difficult to even open it. Well, we don't know yet, but there are probably various ways - partially mechanical and partially chemical.
It actually could be a good topic for one of the next Munro Live videos to discuss with experts whether the industry will have a solution if the structural battery pack is the way to go.