Discover Hyundai: From Molten Steel to Cars

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Hyundai is one of the most popular automotive brands in the world. Car models like the Genesis, Accent, Elantra, Santa Fe, Tucson, and EON are well-known in the Philippines. So if you’re curious how Hyundai transforms molten steel into real cars, please read on.

hyundai_korea forum 2013

In case you’re wondering what this is all about, the company held the Hyundai Motor Company – Korea Forum 2013 which is the very first start-up event of the 3-day Discover Hyundai program. Those invited to this program are given the chance to visit Hyundai Motor Company facilities in South Korea and witness the entire process of transforming raw steel into a finished car.

YugaTech was chosen to represent the Philippines and participate on the said program, joining delegates from other countries namely France, Germany, Spain, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Brazil, India, and Australia.

HMC_HQ_08

Day 2 of the program (Day 1 was the arrival of delegates) involves visiting the Hyundai Motor Company HQ, Hyundai Steel, Hyundai HYSCO, and Hyundai Motor Asan Plant.

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Hyundai Motor Company HQ

The tour started at the Hyundai Motor Company HQ in Seoul where we are given a short presentation about Hyundai’s background, historic achievements around the world, current status and future plans.

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Starting as a production-oriented company back in the 1960’s, Hyundai is evolving itself to become a brand-oriented company that is open to “new thinking” and “new possibilities”. Through this, Hyundai aims to become a “Modern Premium” brand that is simple, creative, yet caring.

hyundai_wrc 2014

Above: Hyundai Motor returns to participate in WRC in 2014 with the Hyundai i20 WRC.

Hyundai Steel

hyundai steel

Next stop is Hyundai Steel where the company transforms iron ores and scrap metals into raw steel as required by Hyundai-Kia Motors and other major heavy industries.

Note: Use of cameras inside the facility is strictly prohibited so we are limited to photos provided by Hyundai.

This is where they unload raw materials from ships using continuous unloader units. Ores mostly come from Brazil and Australia, which is then transferred to the raw material storage facilities. See image below:

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Hyundai_Steel_12-CSUcontinuous-unloader-unit1

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This is what it looks like inside the dome:

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The ores undergo purification processes to remove impurities which then provides materials required to produce steel (Steel = Iron + Carbon).

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Molten steel is then formed into thick slabs and rolled into thin sheets of metal. If you’ve seen how a dough roller works, the concept is similar. The entire process is actually mesmerizing and fun to watch.

hyundai_steel_hot roiled coil

Molten metals are then cooled then cut into sheets or rolled into a coil for storage.

Hyundai HYSCO

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Next is Hyundai HYSCO. From Hyundai Steel, sheets of metal are then treated in this factory as preparation for automotive use. One of the processes involve washing the sheets in acid (pickling) to remove rust, and joining sheets using laser welding.

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Hyundai Motor Asan Plant

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This is where the sheets of metal from HYSCO is pressed to make car parts from doors, hoods, to fenders. Huge numbers of parts are stacked, piled, and used in the same day. If I remember correctly, 90% of the production of this plant is automated and utilizes robots to assemble and paint the cars. The other 10% are by human hand for assembly of some engine parts, wirings, and electronic devices inside the car.

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Once everything is assembled and copacetic, the cars are then started to test the engine and are taken for a quick drive inside the plant. 1,100 Hyundai cars come out of this plant every day.

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This concludes Day 2 of the Discover Hyundai Tour. Next is Day 3 which is a tour inside Hyundai’s Namyang R&D Center.

{image credit: Discover Hyundai}

louie
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