Teijin Limited signed a joint development agreement with Australian venture AEV Robotics (AEV). Teijin and AEV will use the first two years of this initiative to develop elemental technologies for future vehicles.
The agreement is to create lightweight components and solutions for next-generation transportation to realize new forms for transportations in an aging society. The components will use Teijin’s advanced materials such as polycarbonate resin, carbon and aramid fibers, and composites technologies owned by Teijin and its group companies including Continental Structural Plastics for innovative structural design.
Teijin will also contribute specialized knowhow for heat management to optimize weight reduction and heat insulation and for sound absorption. Teijin will additionally apply expertise it has developed in supporting the Kogakuin University Solar Team’s participation in the Bridgestone World Solar Challenge.
AEV’s Modular Vehicle System will serve as the foundation for a standard for next-generation vehicles that satisfy the Well-to-Wheel Zero Emission goal established by Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI). AEV is concurrently developing a highly efficient electric vehicle platform and autonomous driving system that realize low-speed electric vehicle (LS-EV) for use in various fields, such as medical care, logistics and industry, as well as conventional transportation.
AEV plans to use a common robotic base for its vehicles, which will then be fitted with functional pods to move people, deliver goods and perform tasks in urban environments.
Through this co-development project, Teijin expects to continue striving to be a company that supports the society of the future, particularly by offering new solutions for automotive applications based on advanced materials and structural design required for next-generation EVs.
In recent years, EVs have rapidly progressed as a practical solution for environmental load reduction based on the concept of connected, autonomous, shared and electric (CASE) next-generation automobiles. In addition, the role of automobiles is evolving under the concept of mobility as a service (MaaS), which views transportation as a total service.
Meanwhile, fast-aging societies are encountering increasing problems with traffic accidents caused by seniors in urban areas and pedestrian vulnerability in rural areas, as well as traffic congestion, environmental degradation and advancing urbanization in Japan. In response, METI launched its Strategic Commission for the New Automotive Era with the aim of strengthening the global competitiveness of Japan’s automotive industry. The ministry has established Well-to-Wheel Zero Emission as a long-term national strategy for Japan to achieve the world's highest level of environmental performance, including green processes for producing gasoline and electric power sources for automobiles, by 2050.
Teijin says that AEV has developed innovative ideas and construction methods that are not offered by major OEMs. AEV’s engineering capabilities will be applied toward developing simple, lightweight solutions for the chassis, suspension and steering. Teijin will present AEV’s Modular Vehicle System at the Automotive Engineering Exposition 2019 Nagoya this week.