Hyundai Motor Shifts Focus to Digital Factories and Robotics
How is Hyundai Motor pursuing these goals? The company shared its efforts during CES 2022.
Hyundai Motor (Hyundai) has recently shared its plans and future efforts toward developing digital factory initiatives and robotics applications at CES 2022. The presentations aimed to showcase the company’s robotics business efforts and drive the shift toward future mobility.
Hyundai unveiled its Meta-Factory vision at CES 2022. Image used courtesy of Hyundai
Hyundai Motor has also recently partnered with Unity to further its vision of becoming a smart mobility solutions provider.
Hyundai Motor: A Company Overview
First founded in 1967, the Hyundai Motor Company today employs more than 120,000 employees across manufacturing facilities and offices in over 200 countries. The multinational manufacturer has explored several concepts and technologies within the automotive industry.
Most recently, Hyundai unveiled its new vision of Progress for Humanity, a series of initiatives to transform the company into a smart mobility solution provider. To this end, Hyundai is investing in technologies such as robotics and urban air mobility (UAM).
Alongside these projects, the company continues its efforts toward zero-emission vehicles through hydrogen fuel cell and electric vehicle (EV) technologies.
The Metaverse-based Digital Twin Factory
At CES, Hyundai confirmed the partnership with Unity would see the companies jointly design and build a new metaverse roadmap and platform for Meta-Factory. Established via a virtual Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), the partnership will create a digital twin of a real factory, supported by a metaverse platform.
A concept image showcasing the design of the Hyundai HMGICS Innovation Center in Singapore. Image used courtesy of Hyundai
The partnership between Hyundai and Unity will also aim to establish a real-time 3D and virtual platform designed to offer Hyundai a better customer experience.
The Meta-Factory will enable Hyundai to virtually test-run a factory to calculate its optimized plant operation, as well as enabling plant managers to solve problems without physically visiting the plant. The first application of the Meta-Factory will be based on the Hyundai HMGICS Innovation Center in Singapore, scheduled to start operations at the end of 2022.
Toward Robotic Applications
Hyundai’s push toward robotic applications received substantial momentum with the acquisition of Boston Dynamics last year. Since then, the company has set out on a vision of a robotics-based Mobility of Things (MoT) ecosystem in which robotics and mobility are complementary.
Hyundai acquired Boston Dynamics and plans to expand its remote monitoring solutions. Image used courtesy of Hyundai
In addition, Hyundai has also recently unveiled its plug and drive (PnD) and drive and lift (DnL) modular platforms, all-in-one solutions designed for its MoT ecosystem and aiming to make traditionally inanimate things ‘mobile’ through robotics.
Hyundai’s PnD module, for instance, is a LiDAR and camera-enabled, single-wheel robotics platform that features autonomous steering, braking, in-wheel electric drive, and suspension hardware that can be scaled up or down, according to needed applications. Hyundai hopes MoT’s will bring forth an era of things moving around us rather than us moving our things.
Moving forward, Hyundai intends to renew its digital factory and robotics efforts to create the future of mobility.
Will MoT take off, as IoT and Industry 4.0 have?