The Mirai-based vehicle is also equipped with satellite communication tech by Kymeta.
Toyota just showcased a research vehicle based on the Mirai fuel cell vehicle. The research vehicle based on the Mirai tech is also equipped with satellite communications technology.
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The satellite tech belongs to Kymeta, a US based company. Kymeta is a leader in flat-panel antenna technology. The research vehicle was displayed at the 2016 North American International Auto Show (NAIAS).
The new research vehicle shows how Toyota is working to enhance its connected technologies. Toyota also plans to install a Data Communication Module into a broader range of its vehicles.
Toyota is also planning to use high capacity satellites. The satellites offer much higher data transfer rates than conventional satellite technologies.
Usually satellites require a ‘dish’ antenna on the ground. The satellites by Kymeta remove the need for mechanical components. The Kymeta uses software and liquid crystal technologies.
The tech electronically tracks and steers towards satellites. Shigeki Tomoyama is the Senior Managing Officer of Toyota Motor Corporation. According to Tomoyama, Toyota met with emerging companies for several years.
Toyota visited them to investigate new technologies around the world. When Toyota learned about Kymeta, they were very excited. The Kymeta tech could solve the challenge of vehicle-based satellite communications.
“For several years, Toyota met with emerging companies around the world to investigate new technologies,” said Shigeki Tomoyama. “We were very excited to learn about Kymeta, because their flat antennae technology could solve the challenge of vehicle-based satellite communications.”
The research vehicle was also lent for a test drive and has 8000 miles of road testing with cars connected to satellites. At the NAIAS 2016, Toyota displayed all the progress of their efforts in the research vehicle.
“We’re excited to be working with Toyota on this next generation of vehicle connectivity,” said Dr. Nathan Kundtz, CEO of Kymeta. “Kymeta is the first company to successfully demonstrate this type of technology, and we have over 8,000 miles of road testing with cars connected to satellites.”
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The NAIAS (North American International Auto Show) is hosted at the MGM Grand Detroit. 2016 will be the ninth year of the ultra-luxury automotive event. The NAIAS constitutes the release of more than 50 new cars. NAIAS will last from the 16th to the 24th of January, 2016.