Hyundai reveals new automatic charging robot for electric vehicles

Hyundai has revealed an automatic charging robot (ACR) for electric vehicles with a video to show off its seamless charging capabilities. The ACR is a one-arm robot capable of plugging a cable into an electric vehicle’s charging port and removing it again once charging is complete.

As you can see from the video, the car is parked in the charging bay using the Remote Smart Parking Assist feature. Once parked, the ACR communicates wirelessly with the vehicle to open the cover of the charging port. Once opened, the ACR calculates the exact location and angle of the charging port using a camera.

To achieve this, Hyundai developed an algorithm that applies 3D camera-based artificial intelligence technology to robots. The next generation of such technology is said to be capable of accurately handling heavier chargers.

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The robot then plugs the charger into the vehicle’s charging port, thus starting the charging process. When charging is complete, the robot removes the charger and remotely closes the cover of the vehicle’s charging port.

As more EV chargers are outdoors, Hyundai even built a custom outdoor charging station to evaluate the performance of the ACR in various weather conditions. As such, the ACR has been able to secure water and dustproof certifications (grade IP65) and can stably operate in extreme conditions. To prevent accidents, the ACR is also fitted with laser sensors allowing it to detect stationary and moving objects.

“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,” said Dong Jin Hyun, Head of Robotics Lab, Hyundai Motor Group. 

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