© ebm-papst

Fresh air for high-quality paint

Mercedes-Benz is modern­izing the venti­lation system of its paint booths at its loca­tion in Argentina. As a result the car manu­fac­turer is ensuring the quality of its paint­work and protecting produc­tion from down­time.

Vehi­cles leave the Mercedes-Benz paint booths with a high-quality finish. But the old venti­lation system for these booths at the Argen­tinian loca­tion was making it diffi­cult for the car manu­fac­turer to main­tain this stan­dard. After 15 years of oper­a­tion, the system was no longer fit for purpose. The AC fans were breaking down more and more often due to their age, and replace­ment parts were a long time coming. Produc­tion often came to a stand­still. Things couldn’t go on like this: to safe­guard produc­tion and paint­work quality in the future, Mercedes-Benz decided to give its paint booths a retrofit.

Four painting cham­bers are upgraded to the latest venti­lation tech­nology. (Image | ebm-papst)

Double retrofit

The project is taking place in two stages. In January 2024, ebm-papst Argentina started with the first four booths, where they exchanged the old fans for RadiPac with modern EC tech­nology. Previ­ously, there was one AC fan in each booth. Now, a total of 69 fans have been divided into one FanGrid per booth.

The number of fans installed in a FanGrid is indi­vid­u­ally tailored to the size of the booth, with the largest consisting of 20 fans and the smallest of 14.  The four systems currently move an air volume of up to 658,500 m3/h. The second step will follow in 2025: Mercedes-Benz wants to upgrade four more painting cham­bers in the factory to the latest venti­lation tech­nology – thereby doubling the number of EC fans.


Number of EC fans:


Number of systems:


Air volume:

658500 m3/h

With precise control to high-quality paint

To ensure that the paint booths work opti­mally, a sophis­ti­cated indoor climate is required. Firstly, the air in the booths must have a humidity of 50%. Secondly, the room temper­a­ture in the booths must remain constant at around 25.6 degrees Celsius during the entire painting process. This is the only way for the paint to spread and adhere opti­mally to the vehicle parts. With the previous venti­lation system, paint shop oper­a­tors were only able to monitor whether these impor­tant para­me­ters were within the optimum range to a limited extent. Thanks to the retrofit, this is no longer a problem, as the new fans come with a modern sensor system that makes it possible to closely monitor the humidity and temper­a­ture of the booths. With the help of the ModBus commu­ni­ca­tion inter­face, the indi­vidual para­me­ters are selec­tively adjusted and remain reli­ably constant during painting.

The new control system ensures an optimum indoor climate in the paint booths. (Image | ebm-papst)

The new venti­lation systems are equipped with a total of 69 fans. (Image | ebm-papst)

The number of fans installed in a FanGrid is indi­vid­u­ally tailored to the size of the booth. (Image | ebm-papst)

Addi­tional power through FanGrid

Not only has the quality of the painting process itself been ensured by the retrofit, but there are also bene­fits for produc­tion. If a fan in the FanGrid fails, the remaining fans compen­sate for the loss. Thanks to this redun­dancy, produc­tion can continue unin­ter­rupted.

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