The key words that represent the future of automobiles include autonomous driving, connected vehicles and green car.
In the future, vehicles will drive themselves with awareness of surroundings and other vehicles nearby. They will be connected to the external environment. Autonomous vehicles, connected cars, and green car like fuel cell electric vehicles or electric vehicles will change the paradigm of the automobile of the future.
Such technologies for the future of cars can only be realized with the parts, which are composed of materials. Therefore, it could be said that they all begin from the development of new materials.
It is hard to realize this new technology with traditional metallic or polymer materials. We need newer, more advanced materials. Hyundai Motor Group is obtaining core technologies, application technologies, and process technologies to acquire innovative materials of future automobiles through material research.
With these efforts, Hyundai Motor Group is endeavoring to realize innovative evolution toward future technologies.
Electro-magnetic Wave Controlling Materials
for Autonomous Driving/Connected Car In an autonomous or connected car, the information transmitted via radio waves, infrared waves, or visible lights should be received and transmitted in an efficient manner.
And, the technology needed to meet these demands involves the technology to control the electro-magnetic properties of the materials, molecular re-arrangement control technology, and meta-materials.
Rare earth (NdFeB)-based permanent magnets for motors Due to the increased number of eco-friendly vehicles and electrification of cars, the performance of the permanent magnets, which are the essence of electronics used in these vehicles, needs to be enhanced dramatically. These permanent magnets based on rare earth metals yield three to four times higher magnetic performances compared to common ferrite magnets. These new magnets are joined by new alloys or new processes to make the electronic components smaller and more efficient. This technologies can take you to a higher level of fuel efficiency.
Fuel-Cell Materials for Fuel Cell Electric Vehicles
To develop fuel cells for fuel cell electric vehicles of higher performance, durability and driving stability compared to the current models, we need to upgrade the performance of the catalysts and separation plates of fuel cells.
We are now upgrading the technology to deposit particles of catalysts that trigger the hydrogen-oxygen reactions on the materials and investigating the nanoscale conductive carbon forming technology.
These technologies are to be used to enhance the performances of fuel cells.
Next-gen Power Semiconductor Materials
The power semiconductors are the semiconductors that convert, process, and control electric power and are commonly used in the power conversion systems of autonomous vehicles.
The next-generation power semiconductors, which are mainly composed of SiC and GaN materials, have enhanced performance regarding voltages, currents, and operation temperature. This, in turn, enhances the power efficiency and fuel efficiency.