Volvo has become the latest car maker to take advantage of the graphic capabilities of Epic Games’ proprietary Unreal engine.
The Swedish automaker said it is partnering with the creator of the game Fortnite to bring realistic visualization to its next generation of electric vehicles .
The human-machine interface (HMI), which is specific hardware capable of handling human-machine interactions, is the core of Volvo’s partnership with Epic Games.
Volvo says Epic Games is helping build a platform where the automaker’s engineers can design software that improves HMI while also maintaining safety levels.
It is about creating the next generation of HMI for customers. Safety is an essential aspect of the new partnership. Over the years, the company has built its reputation on safe designs, and the new announcement aims to underscore that.
Volvo wants to use the Unreal Engine to display what the car’s external sensors, such as the camera, radar and lidar, see outside the car to drivers without exaggeration.
Other pieces of information, such as navigation and battery life, are also improved as well as the display of that information, such as light, color and animation, thanks to the collaboration with Epic Gamers.
The Unreal Engine is Epic Gamers’ primary tool for creating photorealistic 3D graphics. It was first shown in 1998 in the first-person shooter game Unreal.
It has since been used in a variety of games. It has also been adopted by other industries, most notably the film and television industry.
The auto industry is an attractive target for Epic Games, due to the fact that cars are easier to render in real life than humans. Epic Games recently said it is working with GMC to provide the HMI program for the 2022 Hummer pickup electric truck.
Epic Games has become increasingly interested in the automotive industry, because modern cars are primarily designed using software.
It also includes dozens of internal computers that rely on touch screens and digital interfaces to operate information and entertainment centers.
Volvo brings a realistic visualization of electric cars
Volvo hasn’t explained the first cars to get the fruit of the collaboration, or what schedule customers should expect to see these features rolled out across its wider fleet.
Volvo said it plans to sell 600,000 electric vehicles by the middle of the decade and build a battery manufacturing facility in Europe by 2026.
It also said it was working with Swedish partner Northvolt on developing a new generation of higher energy density batteries designed to be integrated as a vehicle structural component.
The new batteries offer a longer driving distance between charges of up to 1,066 kilometers and much faster charging times.
Volvo is also bringing in-house software development as a way to help speed the deployment of new updates to the company’s fleet or correct bugs in the system.
The new operating system, called VolvoCars.OS, powers the company’s next generation of electric vehicles and enables unsupervised driving on the highways.
The new operating system acts as a cross-platform for all in-vehicle platforms, including Android Automotive and QNX from BlackBerry, Linux and Autosar.