The face of automotive is changing. New car manufacturers and startups are
emerging with fresh, bold ideas, transforming traditional approaches to
automotive design and development. Even college students are influencing the
securely connected, eco-friendly cars of our future.
Students of Eindhoven University of Technology built the
Stella Lux, an award-winning energy-positive “prototype”
that uses NXP technology. And, in Hamburg, the
measure their skills in optimizing electrical race cars for the annual student
Meanwhile, in North America, the quest continues for 16 EcoCAR 3 university
teams that recently received their own 2016 Chevrolet Camaros. This is the
second year of the four-year competition, where teams will re-engineer
each car using technologies to reduce its environmental impact, yet
maintain the muscle and performance expected from this iconic American car.
Sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy and General Motors and managed by
Argonne National Laboratory, the EcoCAR 3 competition is North
America’s premier collegiate automotive engineering competition.
NXP, a 15-year sponsor of Advanced Vehicle Technology Competitions (AVTCs) and
the exclusive chip provider to the EcoCAR 3 competition, last week hosted the
annual Winter Workshop.
“In the next 10 years, we will see more changes and transformation in
automotive than we saw in the previous 50 years,” Matt Johnson, Vice
President and General Manager of NXP Auto MCUs & Processors, said in his
“What’s driving innovation in automotive is technology for
autonomous driving and eco-friendliness – and the EcoCar is a fantastic
way to move this forward,” Kurt Sievers, Executive Vice President of
NXP Automotive, added.
Sievers reinforced the role that electronics is playing by sharing his
observations about the increasing numbers of electronics and software
engineers that are joining auto manufacturers, which was once a
mechanical-engineer led industry.
Students attended four days of training on multi-disciplinary sessions in
design, fabrication, integration and communications from organizers and
sponsors, including General Motors, Argonne National Laboratory, NXP, dSPACE,
MathWorks, Siemens, Mentor Graphics and Weber Shandwick.
The teams learned about NXP’s Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) technology (above) that they’ll use to support autonomous or self-driving
functions in their vehicles. ADAS is a key enabler to reduce emissions by
helping regulate traffic.
Each EcoCAR 3 team has 4 years to apply the latest cutting-edge
technologies and incorporate new innovative concepts.
In addition to the technical training sessions and presentations, EcoCAR 3 and
NXP hosted the 2016 Education Day for Breakthrough Austin, which provides
a path to college, starting in middle school, for low-income students who will
be first-generation college graduates. Students learned about the EcoCAR
competition, hybrid vehicles and the importance of science, technology,
engineering and math (STEM).