Two leading South Korean steelmakers – POSCO and Hyundai – have set about introducing artificial intelligence (AI) to the steelmaking process, according to a report by the Korea Times.

POSCO hopes to improve its workplaces by transforming them into 'smart steel mills' and with this in mind has been working with SungKyunKwan University's department of systems management engineering to develop an AI-powered automatic coating weight control system.

The aim of the new system is to maintain an optimal and constant coating weight to automotive steel sheets, which has proved difficult in the past because manufacturers have to change factory settings to meet the differing demands of automakers. Furthermore, controlling coating weight using human workers can lead to errors and over-consumption of zinc, a key material for coating.

According to POSCO, the plan is to introduce AI to other steel products in preparation for the so-called 'Fourth Industrial Revolution' – otherwise known as Industry 4.0 or 'smart manufacturing.

Meanwhile, Hyundai is working along a similar development path having introduced a 'deep learning algorithm' to help it develop a new manufacturing technology also for automotive steel sheets.

The algorithm in question was originally used by Google subsidiary Deep Mind's AlphaGo AI system and is being employed by Hyundai to develop new manufacturing technology for automotive sheet. According to the steelmaker, sheet developed using AI technology boasts 40% higher solidity than conventionally produced sheet.

Hyundai said that its new steels offer maximum solidity and price competitiveness and will be available to the market later in the year.

Source: Korea Times.