TDK and Toshiba form EV JV to Make Inverters

September 01, 2016 by Jeff Shepard

TDK Corporation and Toshiba Corporation have agreed to establish TDK Automotive Technologies Corporation, a joint-venture that will engage in the development, manufacture and sales of automotive inverters for hybrid vehicles, plug-in hybrid vehicles and electric vehicles. The new JV will be located within the TDK Technical Center in Chiba, Japan. TDK will own 75% of the new company and Toshiba will own 25%.

Upon the establishment of the JV with Toshiba, TDK’s energy unit business is expected to expand tremendously, as the addition of automotive inverters to TDK’s product lineup will broaden its product range and enable to meet diverse customer demand.

Toshiba develops technologies to meet automobile manufacturers’ requirements for low fuel consumption that combine advanced capabilities in automotive inverters with 120 years of cumulative know-how in motors. By integrating power semiconductor modules, Toshiba’s inverters secure high levels of heat dissipation in a short time, and also contribute to downsizing that reduces space requirements.

Toshiba aims to strengthen its competitiveness in the growing market for automotive inverters and motors by combining its highly-efficient automotive motors with automotive inverters developed by the JV and dc-dc converters developed by TDK, and proposing them as a system for hybrid and electric vehicles.

Many countries propose to impose more stringent regulation of automobile exhaust emissions in 2020 and after, in an effort to prevent air pollution and global warming. This trend to stricter regulation is expected to greatly affect the global automobile market, contributing to an increase in demand for hybrid and plug-in hybrid vehicles in the global market and greatly increased use of electric, fuel-cell, and other eco-friendly vehicles.

Under such market conditions, TDK is currently strengthening its energy unit business, which mainly consists of hardware in power conversion for hybrid, plug-in hybrid, and electric vehicles, as well as software that controls such hardware as strategic growth products in the medium to long term. TDK offers a lineup of products, such as dc-dc converters, on board chargers and wireless power transfer systems that are currently being developed. The dc-dc converter in particular utilizes the magnetic material technologies that are the strength of TDK. They are one of the smallest in the industry and offer high efficiency and other product advantages that have won global recognition and a delivery record of more than 2.5 million units in aggregate.