Nissan, Creating EV
Nissan Motor Company is one of the biggest three automobile company in Japan, along with Toyota Motor and Honda. Nissan is also famous as a worldwide automobile manufactures. Nowadays, this company is focusing on EV technology (Electric Vehicle) for future automobile of the world. In that Factory Study Tour V, we had an opportunity to visit Nissan Advanced Technology Center (NATC) in Kanagawa-ken. This NATC is the center of Nissan’s Technology.
Nissan Advanced Technology Center is a part of Nissan Motor Company which is responsible in Research and then Advanced Engineering Process in Nissan’s body. This Technology Center is currently focusing on Advanced Vehicle, Electric Power Vehicle and Component, IT / ITS, Future Mobility and Society etc. Easy to say, Nissan’s Technology relies on this NATC.
The participants of FST were greeted in a big auditorium with capacity of 460 seats. Two informative presentations were held at that time.
It was informed that Nissan is focusing on electric vehicle at this moment. They predict to serve the world by producing this kind of vehicle. The electric vehicle is environment friendly (zero emission). In addition, implementing this kind of technology will also reduce the consumption of fuel.
In reverse, they need to find suitable markets for this kind of technology. The market should be strong in electrical-energy distribution, well-IT supported, and mostly in developed country. The markets are distributed in USA, Japan, China and Europe. In spite of that, Nissan also develop their research center in many countries in the world, such as Singapore, UK, Belgium and Spain.
Although Nissan is focusing on EV, this company has also developed many technologies. Recently, Hybrid, Intelligent Cruise Control, Lane Departure Warning, 4 Wheel Active Steer, Navigation System etc. For Green Program, they develop EV, Eco Car, In-house HEV, Clean Diesel etc. In addition, they also promote many kind of safety technology such as Line Departure Prevention, Distance Control Assist, Around View Monitor etc.
NATC has two objectives; accelerate advanced technology development and create new values on future mobility. In order to achieve these two objectives, NATC promote a new concept office; unique stepped structure design; big collaboration rooms, communication space, auditorium, and craft rooms in each floor for prototyping, collaboration garage which can be observed from any floor etc. In spite of that, NATC also has two experimental facilities; Advanced Vehicle Lab and Electric Power Train Lab.
The tour was begun by the exhibition of Distance Control Assist Simulation. Physically, when a driver accelerate the car more and it is getting closer to an obstacle in front of it, than the gas pedal will push automatically in reverse. So that, the acceleration will be decreased smoothly. A sensor is located in front of the car to detect the distance of an obstacle, in this case, obstacle means another car.
And then we went to a robot model car. The owner of the car can be recognized by the robot by detecting the general form of face of the owner. Such that, nobody can use the car except the owner.
Speaking about robot, Nissan also has developed multi-robot system, inspired by fish motion in group. Those robots could move together and avoiding any obstacle in front of them. The idea seems like using local information for global motion.
Next exhibition was road simulation, the idea is how to control and stabilize a car’s vibration in different kind of roads such that people can drive a car in comfort. The outside exhibition was a car equipped by four cameras in the front, back, right and left side to avoid any collision. The doors are also automatically opened or closed with one trigger action.
Overall, NATC has showed what Nissan in the future will be and what the vision of this company in the future to serve and contribute for the world. Nissan is planning to launch its EV product in 2010, and any supported facilities are also in developing process currently. In the party session, there were many discussion conducted related to the temperature effect of the EV, IT support for EV, and of course the electrical support facility for EV.
Recently, the competition between many automobiles companies tighter, advanced technology need to be improved to win the market. It means that NATC is challenged to let Nissan win. The author hope the good will of Nissan to serve human need can be realized and effect many good things to many sectors.
Risvan Dirza (09R12111)