Volvo Cars triples electric production capacity in Ghent
In an announcement made by Volvo Cars, the company has reported that it is tripling its electric car manufacturing capacity at its plant in Gehen, Belgium.
The announcement follows the company’s strong year of electric car sales, resulting in its preparation to meet the fast growing demands for its Recharge line-up of chargeable cars. In 2020 the share of Recharge cars as a percentage of its total sales more than doubled when compared to 2019.
Volvo expects that by 2022, electric car capacity at the Ghent plant will have more than tripled compared to today's levels, amounting to roughly 60% of the plant's total production capacity.
Prior to Volvo’s latest announcement, Volvo Cars also reported that it will be assembling electric motors at its powertrain plant in Skövde, Sweden, with plans to establish complete in-house e-motor production by 2025, and investing US$85.3mn in coming years.
“Our future is electric and customers clearly like what they see from our Recharge cars. As we continue to electrify our line-up and boost our electric production capacity, Ghent is a real trailblazer for our global manufacturing network,” commented Javier Varela, head of global industrial operations and quality.
Volvo Cars is committed to becoming a premium electric car company over the next few years, with plans to launch several fully electric cars. By 2025 the automotive company aims for its global sales to consist of 50% fully electric cars, with the rest being hybrid models.
Whilst Volovo has begun with Ghent to start building its fully electric cars, the company has plans to increase its electric car manufacturing capacity across its global network of facilities.
Fluent.ai x BSH: Voice Automating the Assembly Line
Fluent.ai has deployed its voice recognition solutions in one of BSH’s German factories. BSH leads the market in producing connected appliances—its brands include Bosch, Siemens, Gaggenau, NEFF, and Thermador, and with this new partnership, the company intends to cut transition time in its assembly lines.
According to BSH, voice automation will yield 75-100% efficiency gains—but it’s the collaboration between the two companies that stands out. ‘After considering 11 companies for this partnership, we chose Fluent.ai because of their key competitive differentiators’, explained Ion Hauer, Venture Partner at BSH Startup Kitchen.
What Sets Fluent.ai Apart?
After seven years of research, the company developed a wide range of artificial intelligence (AI) software products to help original equipment manufacturers (OEM) expand their services. Three key aspects stood out to BSH, which operates across the world and in unique factory environments.
- Robust noise controls. The system can operate even in loud conditions.
- Low latency. The AI understands commands quickly and accurately.
- Multilingual support. BSH can expand the automation to any of its 50+ country operations.
How Voice Automation Works
Instead of pressing buttons, BSH factory workers will now be able to speak into a headset fitted with Fluent.ai’s voice recognition technology. After uttering a WakeWord, workers can use a command to start assembly line movement. As the technology is hands-free, workers benefit from less physical strain, which will both reduce employee fatigue and boost line production.
‘Implementing Fluent’s technology has already improved efficiencies within our factory, with initial implementation of the solution cutting down the transition time from four seconds to one and a half”, said Markus Maier, Project Lead at the BSH factory. ‘In the long run, the production time savings will be invaluable’.
Future Global Adoption
In the coming years, BSH and Fluent.ai will continue to push for artificial intelligence on factory lines, pursuing efficiency, ergonomics, and a healthy work environment. ‘We started with Fluent.ai on one factory assembly line, moved to three, and [are now] considering rolling the technology out worldwide’, said Maier.
Said Probal Lala, Fluent.ai’s CEO: ‘We are thrilled to be working with BSH, a company at the forefront of innovation. Seeing your solution out in the real world is incredibly rewarding, and we look forward to continuing and growing our collaboration’.