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At Belt Technologies, we’re more than the top-of-the-line products we create; we’re an engineering partner, working with customers to develop custom solutions. For instance, our team recently helped researchers at ETH Zurich in Switzerland, one of the world’s preeminent universities in the field of technical science, develop a faster and more cost-effective way to apply liquid coatings during battery production. In this blog, we explain how we helped bring their “curtain coating” system to life.

The Challenge

When it comes to manufacturing processes for the liquid coating of surfaces, curtain coating has the potential to surpass the production speed of the currently used slot-die coating method in battery production. The customer’s issue was finding a conveyor system that could successfully manage this new method.

Due to the nature of the coatings, our challenge was to provide a conveyor that was not only hygienic and easy to clean, but could also withstand aggressive chemicals and high temperatures for drying. The customer also required a low-vibration method to transport the battery components safely and accurately while applying a uniform coating. Conventional flat belts were out of the question due to their decomposability through chemicals and particle generation. The researchers turned to us for a stainless steel belt conveyor that could meet these conditions.

The Solution

At the onset, we extensively examined their setup and determined that a PureSteel® endless metal belt would be the optimal transport solution for the curtain coating system. Our team not only worked alongside ETH Zurich to deliver the perfect belt and deflection rollers, but to also help adapt the fluid-dynamic properties of the applied paste for a proof of concept.

Due to our flat and robust steel belt, the customer was able to select thinner and less stable current collectors (foils) for the coating. This allowed for a reduction of “dead weight” in the battery. Read more about this successful solution and its results in our full case study.

A Successful Partnership

This successful partnership isn’t an anomaly; we’re ready to help you tackle your engineering challenges. Our team has perfected the engineering of every aspect of our PureSteel® belts, so you can trust us to design a unique belt to meet your exact needs. If you think you could benefit from one of our PureSteel® products or our engineering expertise, contact our sales engineers today.