Tesla production to take a giant leap forward after obtaining patent for a 'Unibody Casting Machine'

Posted on August 12, 2019 by Iqtidar Ali

Tesla has wisely made arrangements to quiet all the critics crowing about its production capabilities — the company just obtained the patent for a giant machine that will create the entire body frame of a car in a single press. It's called the 'Multi-Directional Unibody Casting Machine' (patent images and info below)

Above: Tesla's giant Unibody Casting Machine's illustration from the latest patent.

As evidenced in the patent schematics, it looks to be a large-scale press that will produce the car's body in one go or at least in the minimum amount of time that should enable Tesla to increase its production numbers manyfold, imagination is the limit.

Tesla applied for this patent last year and received official approval just recently. This is great news for Tesla's future vehicle production efforts as 2020 should mark the beginning of production for the next-gen Roadster, Tesla Semi, and Model Y. Although looking at the patent files, it's unclear which car from the existing and/or upcoming Tesla lineup will be first built using this giant casting machine.

The inventor of this machine mentioned in the patent document is Matthew Kenneth Kallas who appears to be a Tesla engineer but we were not able to validate the information via his professional profile (as of now).

The abstract/summary of the patent application states the following (link to full Patent PDF):

A multi-directional casting machine for casting a frame of a vehicle is described herein. The casting machine may include a central hub having a cover die portion and a plurality of ejector die portions translatable relative to the cover die portion and configured to meet at the central hub. The plurality of ejector die portions include first and second ejector die portions configured to translate along a first axis and a third ejector die portion configured to translate along a second axis extending substantially perpendicular to the first axis between closed and open positions. The first, second, and third ejector die portions are adjacent first, second, and third sides, respectively, of the cover die portion in the closed positions and spaced apart from the cover die portion in the open positions. The plurality of ejector die portions form a mold cavity corresponding to a portion of a vehicle frame.

Let's go over this enormous Tesla unibody casting machine's patent diagrams one by one (you can read the description under each figure, tap/click to open illustration in new tab).

Above: FIG. 1A is an illustration of a multi-directional casting machine for a vehicle frame configured in accordance with an embodiment of the present disclosure. 

Above: FIG. 1B is an illustration of a cover die of the multi-directional casting machine of FIG. 1A configured in accordance with an embodiment of the present disclosure. 

 

Above: FIG. 2 is an illustration of a multi-directional casting machine for a vehicle frame configured in accordance with another embodiment of the present disclosure.

Above: FIG. 3 is a top view of a portion of a multi-directional casting machine for a vehicle frame configured in accordance with an embodiment of the present disclosure.

Above: FIG. 4A is a cross-sectional view of a portion of the multi-directional casting machine of FIG. 1A. FIG. 4B is a close-up view of a portion of the casting machine of FIG. 4A illustrating certain features of the casting machine in accordance with an embodiment of the present disclosure. 

Above: FIG. 5 is a cross-sectional view of a central hub of the multi-directional casting machine of FIG. 1A configured in accordance with an embodiment of the present disclosure.

Above: FIG. 6 is an illustration of an example method of casting a vehicle frame configured in accordance with an embodiment of the present disclosure. 

And that's not all. Tesla has recently been busy obtaining more production-related patents. The Silicon Valley automaker also obtained a patent for a new wiring architecture — another move to help improve production efficiency as the company prepares for a slew of upcoming vehicle launches (e.g. Model Y, Roadster, Tesla Pickup and Semi Truck).

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Written by: Iqtidar Ali. Originally published on X Auto.

Posted in Electric Vehicles, Tesla, tesla factory, tesla gigafactory, Tesla Model Y, tesla news, TSLA


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