The main reason for writing this blog post is to create more awareness about the SIAT Expo within the electronics community. It is one of the well-regarded expos in the automotive sector. But many people working in the electronics industry are unaware of it. Attending the SIAT Expo is crucial for an electronics engineer to find out opportunities in the automotive field. SIAT is one of the best expos which I have visited in Pune. The sheer amount of innovation that was to be seen under one roof by top companies in the business was staggering. I also didn’t expect to see much electronics at the expo. I was surprised to see the electronics insurgency in the automotive sector. Mainly due to rising demand and investment in Electric Vehicles by the leaders of the automotive industry.
“Symposium on International Automotive Technology (SIAT), widely acclaimed by global automotive fraternity, is a benchmark biennial international event, organized by ARAI, that serves as a forum for exchange of ideas & brainstorming for the automotive industry, with participation of eminent worldwide experts in various automobile arenas.”Mrs Rashmi Urdhwareshe, Director, ARAI
Following is a brief discussion of the innovative concepts and cool demos presented by various companies during the expo. I wish, I was able to spend more time in the expo to see all of the stalls more thoroughly and had documented each and every innovative or cool implementation I came across, but just brief stroll through each stall took me a whole day. Following photos and brief descriptions of the stalls will you an idea of what to expect and will get you excited to visit the SIAT 2021 as the expo happens once every two years.
Let us start with FEV, my current employer. I was certainly impressed by the size and the overall layout of the stall. The representation of the products and concept models was great. The people explaining in the stalls were the actual engineers who worked on the device/concept shown. These were some things that were missing in other booths I visited. The SIAT committee also felt the same as they awarded FEV as the second-best stall.
FEV also showed off its autonomous vehicle concept model and shared its plan and capabilities of designing autonomous vehicles.
National Instruments (NI)
National Instruments had many demos to show off in various aspects of automobile development and testing.
One demo I would like to focus on is their HIL (Hardware In Loop) test setup. For those who don’t know about the HIL testing, let me give you a brief explainer. Hardware in Loop testing, as the name suggests, the testing is carried out on the actual hardware. By providing sensor inputs emulated by software, checked to see if the device gives an intended response. To give an example, we can consider the demo shown by NI. They are testing an engine ECU by providing various sensor inputs from their LabView compatible hardware. These tests are valuable, as one can perform test routines, which are hard to replicate consistently in the real world.
Next, let us talk about SEDEMAC. They had a lot to show in their booth from various controllers and ECUs. But their main attraction was their Engine ISG demo setup.
ISG stands for Integrated Started Generator. Their ISG technology eliminates the need for a starter motor to start the engine. From what I could understand, the dyno/motor generates power and charges the battery. The battery cranks the vehicle’s engine during the start operation, eliminating the need for a starter motor. This technology not only reduces cost but saves space. It’s used to bring start-stop technology in a two-wheeler.
The start-stop technique is widely used in cars to improve fuel efficiency by switching off the engine when a vehicle is stationary for more than a few seconds and restarting the vehicle’s engine when it is time to go, without any intervention from the driver.
Sedemac has its ISG ECU to control this operation. I am not sure why they didn’t reprogram the existing ECU. If there was no ECU in the vehicle, then how were they able to stop the engine. This technology can be added to two-wheelers already in the market with minimal changes to the original two-wheeler. They also had a demo of a few of these modified two-wheelers to showcase.
Finally, let’s talk about one of my favorite stalls this year at SIAT, Devise Electronics.
As mentioned earlier, many companies were showing their innovative projects. One thing I noticed time and time again that most of the companies whose stand I visited in SIAT are not designing their products in India. Many of them have manufacturing in India, testing in India, but no design in India (by which I mean electronics design).
But companies like Devise Electronics are amongst the few companies that work on developing their hardware. From what I could understand, they are currently reselling Battery Management & Charging solutions developed externally. Meanwhile, learning from the market and evolving their solution.
The image shown above is a complete battery solution which what they currently are providing. An engineer explained to us their setup, also showed a development prototype. They have combined the full functionality of the above-shown system into just one small board. Whose size was just a bit bigger than a modern smartphone, reducing the amount of space required for the device also the cost.
Devise Electronics also provide many other services like R&D services, product development, etc. The most impressive part was that they also give training on automotive electronics. Training is for both engineering graduates, students, and experienced professionals. This training helps in bridging the knowledge gap which we currently see in the electronics industry. No wonder engineers explaining their demo were knowledgeable and enthusiastic about their product.
Below are few images of other stalls I visited at SIAT with electronics.
Hopefully, you enjoyed this brief rundown of the few stalls I visited at SIAT 2019. And hopefully, you too are motivated to attend SIAT next time around.