Japan’s Teijin, Australia’s AEV Robotics to co-develop lightweight automotive solutions for future transportation

Japan’s Teijin Limited has signed a joint development agreement with an Australian venture AEV Robotics (AEV). Teijin and AEV will use the first two years of this initiative to develop elemental technologies for the envisioned vehicle.

AEV has developed innovative ideas and construction methods for electric vehicles that are reportedly not offered by major OEMs.

The agreement covers the creation of 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 (PC) 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 world’s biggest solar car race.

AEV’s Modular Vehicle System will serve as the foundation for a de facto 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 vehicles (LS-EVs) for use in various fields, such as medical care, logistics, and industry, as well as conventional transportation.

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 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.

AEV has developed innovative ideas and construction methods that are not offered by major OEMs. AEV’s unique 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, which will take place from July 17 to 19.

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