2012 | 05 | 22
This was the 1st and last time I participated on a professionel industrial design competition. I designed this concept in 2012 for Michelin Challenge Design. I really don't remember the submission theme. But I know that I failed to reach the treshold for reaching the top 10.
Milo is an original design concept which represents a smart approach to fulfil present and future demands of eco-efficiency, comfort and safety of passengers. By using state-of-the-art lightweight materials, innovative high-tech fabrics for impact protection and integrative driving units and steering systems by means of a wheel hub engine design, quality and joy of driving will be times ahead of state-of-the-art family vehicles while carrying up to six people simultaneously. Especially this makes Milo to be the next game changer for sustainability and resource efficiency in urban mass mobility for tight metropolis like Prague, New York, Tokio etc..
The integration of an electric driving unit and a drive-by-wire steering system within each wheel ist one key innovation of the Milo concept.
The main construction of the powertrain system consists of a wheel hub engine with integrated torque motors for driving and steering. Torque motors are triggered independently from each other to provide a highly flexible asynchronous all wheel drive.
Milo is able to perform turning circles similar to motor bikes combined with safety attributes of a conventional SUV and acceleration ability of a roadster. Hence quality and joy of driving will be times ahead of state-of-the-art family vehicles.
Especially this makes Milo to be the perfect small multi-passenger vehicle for tight metropolis like Prague, New York, Tokio etc..
Milo’s compact 17“ wheel contains a resource efficient wheel hub engine design with integrated torque and servo motors for driving and steering functions and an intelligent shock absorbing high-tech low profile tire by Michelin.
The torque motors for propulsion, each 40 kW of electric power, are triggered independently by Milo’s real-time power electronics. This highly flexible asynchronous all wheel drive ensures best traction and adapts appropriately the rotation speed of each wheel while cornering to reduce yarn slipperage or friction. Hence, rotation is transmitted nearly without performance loss to the ground.
Within the main frame of the suspension spoke a 3.6 kW servo motor is integrated. Due to its high moment of torsion and its centric point of revolution within the housing of the stator unit, the wheel system needs only minimal space while range of steering is highly optimized.
To improve shape stability on elevated cruising speeds and resistance against axial torsion while cornering, belt, carcass and side wall of Milo’s tires are reinforced with continuous aramid filaments placed in direction of main loadings.
Further, Milo’s low-profile tire contains an inlay made of a unique shear thickening non-Newtonian fluid (D3O). In its initial state this smart fabric flows freely when moved slowly, while on shock loading, locks together to absorb and disperse energy, before returning to its flexible state instantly. In detail, in case of outer loadings, the intelligent molecules within this synthetic elastomeric polymer lock together while shear viscosity increases. Hence transmitted forces to inner structures will be absorbed significantly. Especially this increases the driving comfort and noise damping while rolling over cobblestones or roads in bad condition.
To minimize total mass of bodywork, all former structural sheet metal parts are substituted by organic blanks made of advanced multi-material composites. Those organic blanks are additionally reinforced by cross-linked continuous filaments to enhance stiffness of the body structure.
Further, to increase passenger safety in terms of shock absorbing, the organic blank structure is provided locally with inserts made of the unique shear thickening non-Newtonian fluid from D3O.
To ensure a resource efficient and affordable mass production of bodywork parts made of organic blanks, preferred production process is net-shape thermo forming. Thermo forming is similar to deep drawing of aluminum or steel blanks except for process temperatures, which are between 300 and 400 °C, and necessary process forces, which are up to 90% lower, to deform the blank. Hence, thermo forming of organic blanks is more eco-friendly and can be performed by compact robots instead of large and resource consuming forming presses.
Milos lightweight and space efficient design as well as the holistic decentralization of the propulsion and steering system into the wheels ensures putting all power electronic devises and a long range battery into the floor of the vehicle. This results in a very low center of mass which directly benefits advanced driving dynamics and prevents the car body from yawing while cornering and dynamically changing lanes on the road. At the end this radical space-saving concept ensures Milo to carry up to six adults inclusive luggage.
I designed the concept completely 1:1 in Siemens NX6 professional 3D CAD software. The biggest challenge was to design the organic bodywork of the car. Finally I rendered the 3D model inside NX6 which unfortunatelly had no professional render engine in those days. Post processing took place in Adobe Photoshop The whole concept took me more than 70 hours of work and research. In retrospective nowadays I would use Moi3D for 3D design and an another package for rendering. In the end I learned much about design research and concept creation; and I enjoyed the whole process very much.