Rheinmetall wins orders for engine blocks, hydrogen products

Rheinmetall AG has announced two multi-million euro orders from major global suppliers in the automotive and heavy transportation sectors.

The first order, placed by an alliance of “two globally active, well-known automakers,” extends over a period of four years and encompasses several hundred thousand engine blocks valued in the mid-double-digit million euro range, the company noted. Rheinmetall said it has a long-established working relationship with the companies involved for high-pressure diecasting engine blocks, and anticipates follow-up orders in future as well.

Rheinmetall cathode flaps Rheinmetall will supply cathode flaps for fuel cell applications in the heavy transport sector. (Photo: Rheinmetall)

The part ordered is a four-cylinder engine block produced via a high-pressure diecasting process. The cast parts will be produced and machined at Rheinmetall’s plant in Neckarsulm, Germany, starting this fall, and will take advantage of the site’s existing production capacity. The customer will be responsible for final processing and assembly.

Carrying out the project in Neckarsulm will be KS HUAYU AluTech GmbH, a joint venture co-owned by Rheinmetall and HUAYU Automotive Systems Co., Ltd. (HASCO), a subsidiary of China’s SAIC Group. Rheinmetall AG’s division Materials and Trade, its castings business unit, consists of KS HUAYU AluTech GmbH in Europe and HASCO KSPG Nonferrous Components (Shanghai) Co., Ltd. (KPSNC) in China. Rheinmetall and HASCO each hold a 50% stake in the joint venture.

Fuel cell application

Rheinmetall’s new established Hydrogen Products and Technology unit has won a new order valued in the lower two-digit million euro range from one of Europe’s largest specialists in fuel cell applications in the heavy transport sector. The order for cathode and shutoff valves comes on top of orders already noted from six series customers for cathode flaps, bringing the 2023 booked business in the product area to around €50 million. In total, around €200 million has already been booked for all fuel cell components this year, the company said.

The customer has ordered several hundred thousand flaps, with three flaps installed per stack, said Rheinmetall. These are series production parts, with spare parts to be supplied later as needed. The cathode flaps, which can be utilized universally, are optimized in terms of weight and size and able to fit into even small installation spaces with bore diameters down to just 28 mm. The shutoff valves deliver maximum sealing performance, achieved through a special double-eccentric flap design, said the company. The flap systems for the latest order control the flow of fresh and exhaust air and isolate the fuel cell stacks on the cathode side at the inlet and outlet points from the ambient environment.

Production is set to start in 2026 and continue until 2030 at Rheinmetall’s Berlin plant, where production lines have been modified for greater output volumes and a higher degree of industrialization. Rheinmetall will supply the components directly to the customer.

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