Hyundai rolls out highly maneuverable MobED mobility platform
The Robotics Lab at Hyundai has developed a new rolling platform to serve as the base for camera dollies on a movie set, package delivery bots, mobility vehicles and even baby strollers. The electric Mobile Eccentric Droid (MobED) features four independently steered wheels and can even keep the low, flat base level on inclines.
The small mobility platform measures 67 x 60 x 33 cm (26.3 x 23.6 x 12.9 in), and tips the scales at 50 kg (110 lb) – though Hyundai suggests that the setup is modular and can be scaled up to accommodate a person, for use as the base of a mobility vehicle perhaps, or serve as a roving baby stroller or leisure vehicle.
But it's mainly been developed as a base for indoor/outdoor service robots, and for "delivery, guiding and filming equipment."
"We have developed the MobED platform to overcome the limitations of existing indoor guide and service robots while maximizing its usability in cities by dramatically improving the platform's overall mobility," said the head of Hyundai's Robotics Lab, Dong Jin Hyun. "We are also looking ahead to assess how potential users of MobED will further expand their needs and use for this type of technology."
Each of its four wheels has three motors for precision independent steering, which allows the MobED to rotate on the spot, take tight corners or navigate a slalom-like course.
The height of the platform relative to the ground can also be adjusted on the fly, so that anything riding up top can stay on the level as the 12-inch wheels wrapped in pneumatic tires roll over uneven terrain or head up inclines.
The wheelbase can extend to 65 cm (25.6 in) for stable high-speed motoring, or pull in to 45 cm (17.7 in) during low-speed maneuvers. And Hyundai has given it a top speed of 30 km/h (18.6 mph) and a per-charge operation time of about four hours thanks to its 2-kWh battery.
The MobED platform, which can be incorporated in manned or unmanned systems, will make its international debut at CES 2022 in January, where the Hyundai Motor Group will present its vision for future robotics. There's no mention of availability at this time.