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Wednesday, 9 April, 2014 0:59 AM
'Building Bridges between the Motor City and Silicon Valley' discussed at SAE 2014 World Congress
Panelists inside the AVL Technology Leadership Center during the SAE 2014 World Congress at Cobo Center in Detroit.
DETROIT -- I attended the AVL Technology Leadership Center, which was located in the Grand Ballroom of Cobo Center for the SAE 2014 World Congress. Peter Albers, Event Developer SAE International, was the host. Jeffrey Owens, Delphi, CTO & Executive Vice President, was the first speaker. He says, "The auto world and the tech world have been colliding for years. We are building bridges between the Motor City and Silicon Valley."
Regulations are transforming power train technologies by pushing the industry to innovate at a very fast pace. The industry is also faced with finding the most cost effective solutions to meet future global emissions and field economy standards. The panel discussed the types of innovation that various OEM's and suppliers are bringing to the table to meet these significant challenges.
SAE International Event Developer Peter Albers served as the host. Jeffrey Owens, Delphi, CTO & Executive Vice President, was the first speaker. "The auto world and the tech world have been colliding for years. We are building bridges between the Motor City and Silicon Valley," Owens said.
Nick Sugimoto, Honda Silicon Valley Lab, asked "What is unique about Silicon Valley?" He answered, "Twelve billion dollars was invested in Silicon Valley in 2013. The majority of the money is in information technology. Money is the driving force in the Silicon Valley Ecosystem. The start ups help to change the world. The intersection between the car companies and Silicon Valley started in the mid 1990's. Each car company has a different function," says Sugimoto. Honda opened a computer science research lab in 2003, then the Venture Capital Investment in 2005, and an IT Open Innovation Lab in 2011.
Takeshi Mitamura, General Manager of Mobility Services Lab, Nissan, discussed customer value from cars. As the economy grows, so does travel distance. Mobility stimulates economic growth as well. "More people live in cities. Urban population is growing which causes traffic accidents, congestion and emission problems. Key technologies are to improve 'zero' emissions," says Mitamura. Silicon Valley is leading in real world testing for both technology and business.
John Suh, Hyundai Ventures, says computing technology cycles are about every 10 years. "How can we build bridges between Silicon Valley and the Motor City? Start by knowing the bridge is made of people, collaborate with other automotive OEM's in Silicon Valley, and respect the differences in mindset," says Suh.
Dirk Hoheisel, Bosch Board of Management, says the future of mobility is automated, connected and electrified. This safety technology reduces car crashes. "By 2020, roughly 10 percent of all cars will have electric power trains. Automated driving will have park assist, traffic jam assist and adaptive cruise control. The connected car will eventually be the internet. Electronic innovation will have new technology controlling them. The gap between the Motor City and Silicon Valley is getting closer and closer in the future," Hoheisel added.
Rob Csongor, Vice President and GM of Automotive at NVIDIA, stated that NVIDIA is a technology company and serves a different variety of markets. "We build IP, chips, boards and systems used in gaming, design and visualization, and OEM devices. Computers have a deep engagement in computer-aided design, simulation, styling and design, and interactive point of sale. We are now building the car computer. We want this computer to have better graphics for navigation," Csongor explained. The key elements of the unified car computer will have multiple platforms of software, scalable architecture, unique user experiences such as high fidelity navigation, human interactions and intelligent driver assist. Computers will evolve dramatically in sophistication.
I also stopped by the 3rd Annual A World In Motion® (AWIM) International Motorized Toy Car Competition and watched the students make toy cars, which competed in several obstacle courses and speed competition. It featured students from Detroit Public Schools, St. Edith School in Livonia, The Michigan State Department of Education and the Indus Center for Academic Excellence.
I visited the Ride and Drive Event and drove a Fiat 500E (electric) vehicle. I have never driven an electric vehicle before and noticed the ride was very quiet. I had to press a button to put it in drive and off I went. I was told that when I pressed on the brakes, it recharged itself. Therefore, it got better mileage in the city as opposed to the highway. As we drove the car onto the streets of Detroit, I noticed how smooth it was to drive and it also had quick acceleration. I really enjoyed my test drive in this vehicle.
Related Stories: NHTSA Chief Counsel Kevin Vincent Will Deliver Opening Keynote Address at SAE World Congress; Reflections On The 2013 SAE Foundation Annual Celebration Dinner; 2013 Cadillac ATS unveiled at SAE Detroit Section meeting in Troy, MI
"Welcome to the SAE 2014 World Congress" banner
Moderator Jeffrey Owens, Delphi CTO & Executive Vice President
Nick Sugimoto of the Honda Silicon Valley Lab
"Innovation through Collaboration" presentation slide from HSVL
Takeshi Mitamura, General Manager of Mobility Services Lab, Nissan
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