Hyundai has built an autonomous robot that charges your electric car
Charging robot addresses swathe of accessibility issues
We always knew the day would come when petrol pump assistants would be replaced by robots. Then, just like those vexatious self-service supermarket check-outs, petrol stations forced us drivers to get out and do it for ourselves. Now, Hyundai has created an automatic charging robot for electric cars, cutting the effort for EV drivers.
Called ACR - automatic charging robot, remember (yes, very creative) - the one-armed bot sits on a four-wheeled bed, navigates towards the car, opens the charge port door and plugs the cable in to charge the car. When the charge is done, the ACR removes the cable and closes the port door.
Developed to operate reliably in all environments, including dusty and wet ones, the robot looks pretty different to the CGI one featured in the July 2022 film, but this live-action bot has the same intention. It uses sophisticated 3D camera-based technology, configured with an artificial intelligence algorithm. It navigates to the car (however it’s parked), identifies the port location and identifies the socket location to accurately plug the cable in.
The ACR will help to overcome accessibility issues, and as cables get thicker to deliver faster charging, it’s likely we’ll all struggle to lift the things (which, to be fair, even now prove a bit unwieldy).
Dong Jin Hyun, robotics lab chief for Hyundai Motor Group, said: “The ACR will help to make EV-charging easier and more convenient, especially in dark environments. It will also improve accessibility, particularly for people with mobility barriers, as charging cables become thicker and heavier to enable high-speed charging.
"We will continue developing the ACR for increased safety and more convenience, so that all EV customers can soon benefit from using it at charging stations.”
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