The company discussed what technologies will become a reality in the next decade -Honda will build rockets and robotic avatars for lunar bases.
In the coming years, Honda will be developing new technologies that will form part of the global 2030 Vision strategy. The Japanese manufacturer’s interests range from vertical takeoff and landing aircraft to small rockets and renewable energy systems for lunar bases. Each of the areas will use the key developments of Honda, both in the field of internal combustion engines, and in electrification, robotics and aircraft construction. Well, the first products of the “new wave” will become a reality by the end of this decade.
Honda sees its 2030 Vision as “creating products and services that make people dream bigger and help them reach their potential.” These technologies include eVTOL, a vertical takeoff and landing aircraft designed primarily for urban flights. Honda’s eVTOLs will be extremely simple and quiet (for this they will be equipped with compact fans), and will also receive a gas turbine hybrid power plant, which will increase the flight range compared to fully electric vehicles.
By the beginning of the next decade, hybrid eVTOLs will become the center of the “mobility ecosystem” and will be networked with various ground vehicles. At the same time, Honda promises to bring a robot avatar to the market. It can be controlled from anywhere in the world using a proprietary AI control system. Honda Avatar Robot develops ASIMO technologies. It is equipped with a multi-finger manipulator and is trained to perform a series of simple actions. For example, picking up tiny objects with your fingertips and moving them from place to place, or opening bottles.
Honda engineers are now looking for ways to reduce the size of mechanical parts, and are also trying to improve grip precision and fine motor skills. Demonstration tests of prototypes will begin in 2024, so that in the 2030s, using robotic avatars, to solve specific problems. In particular, they can be used on the moon, where Honda is going to build a plant for the production of hydrogen. It will receive energy from renewable sources and by electrolysis under high differential pressure to split water into oxygen and hydrogen (in 2020, NASA confirmed the presence of water on the solar side of the Moon).
The hydrogen can then be used to generate electricity and to fuel rockets; oxygen will be useful for life support systems of lunar bases. By the way, Honda will also have its own rockets, only small ones. They will be reusable and will be used to launch low-earth orbit weather or communication satellites. Some of these initiatives are supported by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency JAXA.