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When Race-Car Drivers and Analysts Mingle

Nov. 9, 2017
Emerging technologies from industries spanning the electronics spectrum, especially innovations in the electric-vehicle and energy-storage markets, will hold court at the IDTechEx show.

The “car of the future” is almost here, and next week’s IDTechEx event will bring that concept to life via presentations given by powerhouses of industry ranging from the automotive arena to government and technology. Among the speakers expected to be on hand will be Julia Landauer, a two-time championship-winning NASCAR driver, who will give the keynote address.

Landauer will hypothesize how auto racing and Silicon Valley, in conjunction with the auto industry, can learn from each other. Topics such as alternative energy sources, wearables (monitoring driver vitals), augmented reality (AR), and electric vehicles will be covered in her address.

In addition, Dr. Carl Dietrick, CTO of Terrafugia, will discuss the company’s flying/driving vehicles (see figure), including some of its innovations in sensing, the Internet of Things (IoT), and autonomous systems.

Terrafugia’s Transition is a folding-wing, two-seat roadable aircraft, designed to fly like a typical light sport aircraft in the air and drive like a typical car on the ground (Courtesy of Terrafugia)

Also on hand will be a host of major car manufacturers, as well as representatives from various arms of government. For example, Porsche will discuss technology in auto racing with e-mobility technical system engineer Ken Gould, focusing in on the relationship between motorsport activities, technical innovation, durability, and refinement.

With a session titled “Future electric vehicle adoption in California,” the California Energy Commission will delve into the development and implementation of electric-vehicle programs. In addition, autonomous vehicles sessions like the one from Elix wireless sound promising: Dr. Brice Jamieson, director of technology, plans to discuss autonomous vehicles and the need for an autonomous charging solution.

Acknowledging the momentum behind energy-storage systems (ESS), Google will give a presentation on the overall market, technology advances, and cost of vanadium flow batteries for ESS. Mercedes-Benz Energy also is focused on this topic—Candice Yu, who’s in charge of Policy and Strategic Planning at the company, will offer her take on how automakers are driving energy storage adoption.

Additional presentations will tackle subject matter such as new graphene and supercapacitor technologies that should even benefit IoT applications. Also on tap is a conversation on hybrid vehicles led by Protean Electric, a company that designs, develops, and manufactures in-wheel motor solutions.

The show is organized and hosted by IDTechEx, which means IDTechEx analysts will be available to offer their insights. I look forward to IDTechEX’s Chairman, Dr. Peter Harrop’s talk about the roadmap and trends in electric vehicles.

I hope to meet as many exhibitors as possible at the event. Also, stay tuned to our website, where I’ll be sharing more details from the goings-on. See you all in Santa Clara, Calif. next week!

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