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POSCO develops car body frame

By Korea Herald

Published : March 9, 2012 - 19:25

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POSCO on Friday announced the results of its development of a steel body frame for electric cars that is 25 percent lighter than existing chassis.

The use of ultra high strength steel was increased by 40 percent in the new chassis, but it does not require changes in the existing auto production lines, allowing minimized cost increases for mass production of electric cars, POSCO said in a press release.

The POSCO Body Concept-Electric Vehicle meets international safety standards for 2015, and reduces greenhouse gas emissions by 50 percent compared to existing chassis throughout its life cycle from production to collection of scrap metal after disposal.

“The PBC-EV is the fruit of POSCO’s efforts for environment-friendly green growth and shared growth with our customers,” POSCO chairman Chung Joon-yang told officials of the steelmaker and domestic carmakers at the Global R&D Center in Songdo, Incheon.

“POSCO will combine our cutting-edge steel materials and technologies to contribute toward commercialization of electric cars.”
POSCO chairman Chung Joon-yang (second from left) and his staff listen to a briefing on the newly developed body frame for electric cars Friday at the Global R&D Center in Songdo, Incheon. (POSCO) POSCO chairman Chung Joon-yang (second from left) and his staff listen to a briefing on the newly developed body frame for electric cars Friday at the Global R&D Center in Songdo, Incheon. (POSCO)

Sales of electric cars reached 1 million units worldwide last year, and are forecast to increase by more than 30 percent on annual average to 6.78 million units in 2015 and 10 million units in 2020.

New technologies such as hot press forming and multi-directional roll forming have been applied to the PBC-EV to bolster its intensity and freely process the cross sections of the ultra high strength steel, POSCO said.

Also on Friday, POSCO broke ground for an environmentally-friendly “green building” in the Songdo campus of Yonsei University.

The steelmaker will spend 20 billion won to construct this modular building with Yonsei University as a test bed to develop energy-saving office and apartment models.

Energy required to run the green building will be secured from sunlight, geothermal heat, rain water and other eco-friendly sources, and earthquake-proof steel materials will be used, according to POSCO.

The steelmaker said it will recycle blast furnace slag to apply a concrete technology that emits less carbon dioxide.

Once the POSCO Green Building is completed, it is expected to reduce about 100 tons of carbon dioxide annually, which can be absorbed by some 9,400 trees, the company said.

By Kim So-hyun (sophie@heraldcorp.com)