Hyundai launches uncrewed vehicle concept

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The Korean auto manufacturer and partner tech companies have released a concept vehicle designed to carry payloads over remote and inaccessible terrain, without a human on board.

Hyundai launches uncrewed vehicle concept
The Tiger will also be able to connect with a UAV, enabling it to be dropped in remote locations

 

The Tiger concept vehicle (Transforming Intelligent Ground Excursion Robot) is Hyundai’s second Ultimate Mobility Vehicle concept behind the Elevate concept, launched in 2019.

Both Elevate and Tiger are equipped with both legs and wheels, enabling the machines to move like an all-wheel vehicle, or to use its walking ability when stuck or travelling through difficult or impassable terrain.

The Tiger does this without the need for a driver in the vehicle, instead intended to connect to unmanned aerial vehicles that can fully charge and deliver the unit to inaccessible locations,

Equipped with a large load bay, Hyundai says the Tiger’s leg-wheel articulation will enable it to keep its payloads more stable than a typical ground vehicle.

On top of this, the Tiger is designed to have 360-degree directional control and a range of sensors for remote observation.

The vehicle is being developed by Hyundai Motor Group’s US-based New Horizons Studio, which was established late last year, in partnership with engineering design software company Autodesk and external concept design experts Sundberg-Ferar.

Autodesk vice president of business strategy for design and manufacturing Srinath Jonnalagadda says the company had relished the challenge of increasing vehicle strength while reduce weight in transportation.

The teams have been working together to create a lightweight but incredibly strong structure, with the legs and certain chassis elements created using carbon fibre composite additive printing.

Sundberg-Ferar manager of design and innovation strategy David Byron says his team had tried to create a robot that maximised the efficiency of wheeled motion with the articulation of a quadruped to expand the possibility of reaching more remote locations.

"Tiger is a modular platform design allowing different bodies to be attached to the chassis for unique applications such as cargo delivery or surveillance in locations not suitable for humans," he says.

These capabilities make the concept vehicle ideal for 360-degree surface evaluation, in areas struck by natural disaster, while tackling challenging terrain, or even exploring the surface of another moon or planet, Hyundai adds.

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