ElringKlinger AG




Battery cells

The designs of larger batteries can be divided into three categories: round cells, prismatic cells, and coffee-bag cells. Round cells and prismatic cells have a (stable) sheet metal housing, whereas flat cells (= coffee-bag or pouch cells) have a casing made of foil. Round cells and prismatic cells differ in terms of the way the foil packets, i. e., the foils in which the energy is actually stored, are designed. The cells also have different exterior shapes: a round cell is similar to a cylinder and has a circular base, whereas a prismatic cell has a square base.

Bipolar plates

The key mechanical components in fuel cell stacks. Their function is to create an electrical interconnection between two cells. In other words, they transmit the electricity generated, supply the cells with hydrogen and oxygen, and distribute the coolant. ElringKlinger develops and manufactures metal bipolar plates. Among the technical requirements for these components are high-precision metal-forming within the contact area (in the micrometer range), accurate, low-distortion laser welding of the cathode and anode plates, and suitable conductive and anti-corrosion coatings.


Cell contact system

The cell contact systems developed by ElringKlinger for lithium-­ion batteries consist of cell connectors and a cell carrier in which the connectors are integrated as a robust laser-welded construction. Via the cell connectors, the individual battery cells are connected both in a row and parallel to one another. They act as conductors, absorb cell energy and contain sensors. The system consists of a control interface with thermal and electric monitoring.

Cockpit cross-car beam

Structural component located behind the interior panel of the vehicle’s cockpit; it supports elements such as the dashboard, steering column, heating modules, glove compartment, etc. Applying HFH technology (hydroformed hybrids), ElringKlinger manufactures cockpit cross-car beams as lightweight components. This involves producing so-called hybrid parts from polymer and metal materials by means of the hydroforming method (cf. Hydroforming) and plastic injection-molding in a single step. Similar structural components include front-end carriers, to which the headlights or other vehicle parts are fitted.

Cryogenic application

Cryogenic applications use liquefied gas at extremely low temperatures. Fields of application include flash freezing in the food industry or the area of food preservation. Cryogenic systems are engineered, among other things, from products made of high-performance plastics. Due to the material properties and functional specifications of these products, they can be deployed at temperatures below - 200°C.



In the automotive industry, downsizing is a concept that refers to a reduction in engine capacity while improving the engine’s efficiency. One of the most common ways of achieving this is to feed in air under increased pressure (compressor/turbocharger). A reduction in engine size means lower fuel consumption and therefore lower emissions. At the same time, higher injection pressures generate greater thermal and mechanical stress in the engine compartment. In turn, this makes greater demands in terms of gasket design and thermal management.



Plastics/polymers can be divided into three main categories depending on their processing properties: thermoplasts, duroplasts, and elastomers. The distinctive feature of elastomers is that their shape can be changed temporarily through the application of pressure or stretching before they return to their original form (rubber). The final material varies according to the raw materials, manufacturing process, and additives used. In the field of sealing technology, ElringKlinger utilizes its own elastomers that have been specially developed and optimized to meet individual customer requirements.

Electromagnetic compatibility (EMC)

The ability of electrical equipment to operate in an electromagnetic environment without causing interference with the environment or other equipment.


Front-end carrier

cf. Cockpit cross-car beam

Fuel cell

Converts chemical fuel energy into electrical energy to a highly effective degree. In order to perform this reaction, the cell requires oxygen and hydrogen. The hydrogen can also be obtained from a hydrocarbon-based fuel. This involves a socalled reformer providing the cell with hydrogen gas derived from diesel or natural gas, for example. Unlike batteries, fuel cells do not store energy, but rather convert it. ElringKlinger focuses on the development and production of components for PEM low-temperature fuel cells (cf. PEM fuel cell), which are of relevance to mobile applications.

Fuel cell stack

In a fuel cell context, the term “stack” refers to a complete stack of individual fuel cells, including bipolar plates and retaining and connecting devices. To boost performance, the individual fuel cells are connected in series.


Hybrid drive

In the automotive industry, the term refers to the use of two different energy sources to drive a vehicle. This usually ­involves combining a combustion engine with an electric motor. Vehicles can be categorized according to the level of hybridization:

  • Micro hybrids feature an automatic start-stop system and, additionally, a brake energy regeneration system to charge the starter battery.
  • Mild hybrids have an electric drive that supports the combustion engine for more performance.
  • Full hybrids deliver an output of 20kW/t, which makes them capable of being propelled solely by an electric engine.
  • Plug-in hybrids are comparable to full hybrids. Additionally, the accumulator (i.e., the rechargeable battery) can be charged via the combustion engine or the electrical grid.



Lithium-ion battery

Lithium-based batteries are rechargeable, durable, high-­energy batteries with high energy density. They are primarily used in electric and hybrid vehicles. ElringKlinger develops and produces, among other products, modular cell contact systems for such batteries.


New Energy Vehicle

In China, the term “New Energy Vehicle” (NEV) refers to vehicles that are powered either partly or entirely by an electric drive, e.g., battery electric vehicles (BEV) or plug-in hybrids (PHEV). In 2009, the Chinese government launched its NEV program for the purpose of promoting the development and introduction of New Energy Vehicles.

Nitrogen oxides (NOx)

The internationally recognized abbreviation NOx is used for compounds of nitrogen and oxygen. These gases, which form in the exhausts of combustion engines, are harmful to humans and the environment. Emissions standards are becoming increasingly stringent worldwide and prescribe strict limits for NOx.


Organo sheet

Planar semi-finished parts that have been reinforced with a material made of glass, carbon, aramid or mixed fibers. The mechanical performance of components made of organo sheet materials is particularly high. Lightweight, fiber-reinforced organo sheets can partially replace sheet steel or aluminum in vehicles.


PEM fuel cell

PEM stands for “Proton Exchange Membrane.” PEM fuel cells work at low temperatures of around 90 °C and have a polymer membrane as their central element. In the synthetic reaction known as cold combustion, oxygen and hydrogen react with one another, aided by a catalyst, releasing electricity and causing water to form. For PEM fuel cells used in passenger cars, ElringKlinger has developed metal bipolar plates. Several hundred such plates are incorporated within a single cell stack.


Polyamides are polymers (plastics) and usually refer to synthetic thermoplastics. ElringKlinger uses polyamides in the production of lightweight plastic housing modules.

Prismatic battery cells

See “battery cells”


Abbreviation for “polytetrafluoroethylene”. PTFE is a thermoplastic high-performance plastic – commonly known by the trade name Teflon – that has a very low coeficient of friction and is particularly resistant to most aggressive chemicals and external inluences such as moisture and UV radiation. PTFE is resistant to temperatures as low as 200°C and only melts at over 320°C. With its modified material Moldlon®, which is registered as a trademark, ElringKlinger has an injection- moldable PTFE high-performance material with a wide range of potential applications, for instance in the field of medical technology.


Range extender

Range extenders are auxiliary power units fitted to electric vehicles, the purpose of which is to increase the range of such vehicles. Among the range extenders frequently used are combustion engines that drive a generator, which in turn supplies electricity to the rechargeable battery and electric motor.


A concept in the automotive industry that – in contrast to downsizing – focuses not just on the use of smaller power units but also on the optimized interaction of various elements, such as engine capacity, torque, and consumption, for the engine in question.


SOFC (Solid Oxide Fuel Cell)

Solid oxide fuel cells are also known as “high-temperature fuel cells” owing to their high operating temperatures (approx. 800 °C). This type of fuel cell can be operated with a wide range of fossil fuels, from which hydrogen gas is obtained using a reformer.


Tier 1/Tier 2

Automotive companies that supply vehicle manufacturers (OEMs) directly are known as Tier 1 suppliers. These generally source some of their products from their own suppliers, which are then referred to as Tier 2 suppliers, Tier 3, and so on, reflecting their position in the supply chain. Most of ElringKlinger’s products go directly to vehicle manufacturers, making it a Tier 1 supplier. With regard to exhaust gas purification technology and transmission components, ElringKlinger mostly acts as a Tier 2 supplier.


Turbochargers increase the air flow rate in engines by ­compressing the air that is necessary for combustion. The turbocharger is one of the key factors in engine downsizing, as it allows for equivalent or even better performance with a reduced engine capacity. In turn, this results in fuel savings.


V ring

Extremely elastic sealing element for the high-temperature range, used for the purpose of sealing challenging dynamic sealing gaps in exhaust gas applications. V rings are used primarily in modern exhaust gas turbocharger variants.



Abbreviation for “Worldwide Harmonized Light Duty Test Procedure.” Test method for vehicles to measure data such as fuel consumption or exhaust gas limits. From September 1, 2018 on, all newly registered passenger cars and light commercial vehicles in the EU have to comply with exhaust emission standards measured according to WLTP. The new test cycle replaces the NEDC standard (New European Driving Cycle), which had been in force since 1992, and is intended to deliver more realistic results.



Cash flow

Figure used to determine a company’s financial strength. It measures the extent to which cash received as a result of the company’s operating activities exceeds its cash outflows and shows the amount of cash generated by the company itself. For the purpose of determining cash flow, an entity’s profit for the annual period is adjusted for items that do not produce an inflow or outflow of cash, such as depreciation or changes in provisions. Net cash from operating activities is the surplus of cash generated by operating activities.

Corporate Governance

Includes the entirety of rules, regulations, and values for corporate management and supervision that should be as responsible as possible and focused on sustainability and value generation over the long term.

Countervailing duties

Countervailing duties are trade import duties imposed under World Trade Organization rules to neutralize the adverse effects of state subsidies.


Earnings per share

Earnings per share (EPS) is calculated by dividing the profit attributable to shareholders of a stock corporation by the number of shares outstanding. It is used for the purpose of analyzing profitability and – at a cross-sector level – for evaluating a company.

EBIT margin

EBIT expressed as a percentage of total Group sales revenue. The EBIT margin shows the profitability of a company’s operating business over a specific period of time.

EBIT/Operating result

Abbreviation for earnings before interest and taxes. EBIT corresponds to the operating result before taking into account net inance costs. At an international level, this figure is commonly used to compare companies’ operating earnings power.


Abbreviation for earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization. EBITDA is a financial indicator used for the purpose of measuring the proitability of a company at the operating level, as the indicator does not include any elements influencing profit, for example, in terms of the financing structure, national jurisdiction, or reporting standards applicable to the entity.


Abbreviation of European Free Trade Association; it consists of Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, and Switzerland, i. e., countries that are not members of the European Union (EU). EFTA pursues economic policy objectives that are less far-reaching than those in the EU.


Financial covenants

Refer to contractual clauses in loan agreements. Under these terms, companies obligate themselves to meet specific financial requirements.



Abbreviation for Handelsgesetzbuch (German Commercial Code). The financial statements of the parent company, ­ElringKlinger AG, are prepared in accordance with HGB.



Abbreviation for International Financial Reporting Standards. They contain accounting provisions for exchange-listed ­entities. The application of IFRS has been mandatory in the EU since January 2005. ElringKlinger has been reporting in accordance with IFRS since 2004.



Abbreviation for “Mergers & Acquisitions.” The term generally refers to a legal consolidation or amalgamation of two entities into one entity (merger), whereas an acquisition occurs when one entity takes ownership of another entity’s stock, equity interests, or assets (acquisition). M&A encompasses all activities relating to the transfer and encumbrance of ownership rights in entities, including the formation of groups of companies, the restructuring of groups of companies, mergers and conversions in the legal sense, squeeze-outs, the financing of corporate acquisitions, the formation of joint ventures, and the acquisition of entities.


Natural hedging

For the purpose of reducing transaction costs and risk, transactions leading to income and expenses of a foreign subsidiary can be made in the same currency, usually the local currency, as a form of natural hedge.

Net debt

Figure that describes the level of indebtedness of a company if all current assets were taken into account for the purpose of repaying its liabilities. Net debt is calculated on the basis of interest-bearing liabilities (primarily bank borrowings) less cash and cash equivalents.

Net finance income/cost

Profit or loss arising from financial transactions, e.g., interest income and expenses, income and expenses attributable to investments, or income and expenses attributable to exchange rate differences. Net finance income or cost is a component of pre-tax earnings presented in the income statement.


Net Working Capital

Indicator used for the purpose of monitoring changes in liquidity. It is calculated on the basis of inventories, current contract assets and trade receivables less trade payables and current contract liabilities.


Operating free cash flow (before acquisitions)

Operating free cash low represents the funds freely available to the company for distribution. It is calculated by subtracting capital expenditure payments from net cash from operating activities. Operating free cash flow does not include cash payments in respect of acquisitions, cash payments for investments in financial assets and incoming payments from divestments.


Purchase price allocation

Purchase price allocation (PPA) refers to the allocation of the price paid in the purchase of a company or an interest in a company to the individual identifiable assets and liabilities acquired as part of this transaction. As part of the formal procedure of consolidation within the Group, for example, it is possible to capitalize assets of an acquired entity, such as the customer base and order backlog, that would not otherwise qualify for capitalization in normal business. This leads to write-downs that have a dilutive effect on operating profit at Group level.



Abbreviation for return on capital employed. ROCE measures a company’s proitability and the efficiency with which its capital is employed. In this context, EBIT is divided by average capital employed. At ElringKlinger, capital employed includes shareholders’ equity, financial liabilities, provisions for pensions, and interest-bearing non-current provisions such as anniversary and partial-retirement provisions. The average value is calculated as the aggregate of the carrying amounts at the end of the reporting period of the previous year and the current year, divided by two.


Statement of cash flows

The statement of cash flows shows the calculations for the flow of funds generated by a company from operating, investing, and financing activities during the reporting period. The statement of cash flows helps determine the company’s ability to generate cash and cash equivalents.

Syndicated loan

A syndicated loan, also known as a syndicated bank facility, is financing offered by at least two lenders – referred to as a syndicate – who work together to provide funds for a single borrower. The focus of syndicated loans tends to be on largescale financing. At the same time, syndicating the loan allows lenders to spread risk.


Working Capital

Indicator used for the purpose of monitoring changes in liquidity. It is calculated on the basis of inventories, current contract assets and trade receivables.