The Electric Scooter Made using Robotic Origami

By Oliver Freeman
Unlikely though it may sound, STILRIDE and Semcon have manufactured an electric scooter through robotic origami technology...

If you’ve ever taken a look at the electric two-wheeler market, you’ll know that the pinnacle of models stand out, not because they’re aesthetically pleasing or turn the heads of passersby, but because they deliver outstanding performance and battery range. Fortunately, as e-scooters become more popular, companies are producing prototypes that provide both the aesthetic and performance that riders need. STILRIDE, a Swedish smart manufacturing innovation company, happens to be paving the way in this very market. 

Manufactured to Ride in Style

Through a combination of unique design and a sustainable new production technique, STILRIDE is responsible for producing the very first stainless steel electric scooter. With Semcon as its partner, the company is planning to challenge traditional manufacturing techniques and pave the way for the new design by using robots to fold steel.

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“Our ambition was to create the world’s most attractive, most sustainable electric scooters. By using industrial robotic origami we can fold structures from a flat sheet of metal in completely new ways and create shapes true to the material’s characteristics and geometric nature,” says Tue Beijer, industrial designer at Semcon and one of the founders of STILRIDE.

It all began as a Vinnova-funded research project, looking at how a new way of shaping steel could pave the way for new design and business opportunities. One result of this project is the new STILRIDE SUS1 electric scooter, which is now introduced to the market. This powered scooter has a unique design, innovative technical features, durable, efficient batteries and a powerful electric motor. 

Sustainability Above All Else

“The environmental footprint of the production process for this product is minimal. Our LIGHT.FOLD production technology makes for flexible manufacture. Stainless steel can be recycled, too, and it has a long service life,” says Tue Beijer.

Semcon’s responsibilities in the project have involved CAD, mechanical design and engineering project management. The unique production method devised by the project will now be examined further by the business community and academia, working closely together.

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The STILRIDE research project is lead by founders Jonas Nyvang and Tue Beijer. A tight collaboration between them, the product development company Semcon, the steel engineering workshop Brantheim, the research institute RISE IVF as well as the global stainless steel manufacturer Outokumpu has been the foundation of the success. The STILRIDE project is part of the research program Metalliska material coordinated by Jernkontoret and funded by The Swedish Innovation Agency: Vinnova. 

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