Companies reveal smart 3D glass at IAA 2017
Yanfeng Automotive Interiors (YFAI) and KOSTAL, a supplier of mechatronic human machine interface (HMI) components, presented at the IAA 2017 the Yanfeng-KOSTAL-Module (YaKoMo). The companies state that the freely designable 3D glass surfaces combined with new HMI technologies enable the implementation of operating concepts for mobility designs.
The large decorative surfaces in the vehicle, including the door trim, floor console, and instrument panel, will take on functions as smart interior surfaces. Whereas to date these surfaces have been mainly decorative, they now advance to become mechatronic user interfaces. In the strategic partnership, YFAI and KOSTAL combine their competencies relating to interiors and HMI to jointly develop and manufacture integrated smart surfaces.
Officials from the companies say that they view every surface inside the vehicle becoming a smart surface. To that end, YaKoMo is designed as a functional surface based on three-dimensional curved glass. With the technology, operating elements and switches can be integrated into even larger decorative elements in 3D glass surfaces to form a surface module. If no information is called up, the integrated screen and operating surfaces remain as decorative glass surfaces. Thus, the driver is not distracted by unnecessary information.
The two companies presented the first results of their strategic partnership at the IAA 2017 using a floor console as an example. The concept development, which is nearly production-ready, could be used in the next generation of vehicles from model year 2021.
"The response from automakers to the cooperation between KOSTAL and YFAI has been very pleasing. Our customers however not only expect a top-quality integrated final product but also the whole service from a single source. This of course reduces the complexity on their side. We want to make the OEM's decision to choose our combined range of smart interior surfaces as easy as possible," explained Han Hendriks, Chief Technology Officer for YFAI, and Jörg Schwerak, Vice President Research and Development for KOSTAL, on behalf of both companies.