The country’s first International Transportation Electrification Conference (iTEC India) 2015 was inaugurated in Chennai today by Anant Gangaram Geete, Minister of Heavy Industries & Public Enterprises, government of India. The 3-day event is jointly organised by Society of Automobile Engineers India (SAE INDIA) and Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineering (IEEE) Industry Applications Society. iTEC India 2015 is supported by the Department of Heavy Industry, government of India under the Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Hybrid and Electric Vehicles (FAME) scheme, a part of the National Electric Mobility Mission Plan, Confederation of Indian Industries (CII), Society of Manufacturers of Electric Vehicles (SMEV), Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM) and Automotive Component Manufacturers Association (ACMA).

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Also present at the inauguration were Ambuj Sharma, Patron of the steering committee for iTEC INDIA & Additional Secretary, Department of Heavy Industries, government of India; Dr Aravind S Bharadwaj, President, SAEINDIA & Senior VP (Advanced Technology and Services, Automotive & Farm Equipment Sectors), Mahindra & Mahindra, Dr David Schutt, CEO, SAE International and Dr Tomy Sebastian, President elect, IEEE Industry Applications Society (IAS) & Director of Motor Drive Systems, Halla Mechatronics, Michigan, USA, N Balasubramanian, Chairman, Organising Committee for iTECINDIA & Deputy VP, Renault Nissan Technology & Business Centre India.

In his keynote address, Anant Geete said, “The growth and adoption of hybrid electric vehicles will be a major component of the government’s FAME India scheme. These vehicles will reduce CO2 emissions and fuel consumption, in turn positively impacting the foreign exchange situation in the country, since 90% of our crude oil is imported. India is unique and there are huge cost and environmental challenges. Solutions which work abroad may not work as is in India. iTEC India 2015 will provide the opportunity to deliberate on these technical challenges and come up with solutions required for India’s future.”

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SAEINDIA also announced ELECTRA, a Student Competition to stimulate technology exploration and evaluation for students from engineering institutes across India. This event provides a real world engineering challenge for the SAEINDIA student members allowing them to experience the entire process from design and engineering to production, marketing and endurance testing for a 2 seater electric vehicle. The Virtual ELECTRA, a qualifier for ELECTRA is scheduled on August 28 along during iTEC 2015, where 12 teams from all over India will present their plans and designs for a prototype. Qualifying teams will compete early next year to demonstrate the performance of their vehicles.

Dr Bharadwaj said, “We believe unambiguously that SUPRA Electra should hit bulls eye, platforming the success of SUPRASAE and this could only be realised with the consensus of DHI, automotive bodies,Organisations and Engineers innovation.” He also said that iTEC India will outline the roadmap to help the industry reach the government of India’s challenging target of 6-7 million sales of hybrid and electric vehicles year on year from 2020 onwards. While monetary incentives and investments are important to realize this ambition, technology innovation and advancements are even more crucial at this stage to shape the growth trajectory of electro mobility adoption in the country.

Ambuj Sharma, Patron iTEC India mentioned that Department of Heavy Industry is determined to achieve the NEMMP goals through FAME and accelerate the growth of automobiles in the country in a sustainable manner. He also invited Technocrats and Entrepreneurs to come forward to support this initiative.

Dr Tomy Sebastien, President elect, IEEE IAS said “Cooperation of SAE whose focus is on mobility systems and IEEE which is the largest professional association for the advancement of technology focused on electrical and electronic technologies is probably the most efficient way to address the technical challenges associated with the integration of Electrical technologies into automotive systems”

N Balasubramanian, Chairman, Organising Committee of iTEC India 2015, expressed his gratitude to Ministry of Heavy Industries, Government of India for having supported in conceptualising this first of its kind conference in India. He also thanked the delegates and the participating companies for coming together for the conference.

iTEC India 2015 also saw the launch of the “Lithium” Project. Lithium is the world’s first service provider with a hundred percent zero emission electric car fleet for corporate transport. Lithium provides an integrated transport management system for corporate including a fleet of connected cars manned by trained and certified drivers and supported by qualified professionals, working in the backend. A display of the latest electric vehicles was showcased during iTEC India 2015 highlighting the Nissan Leaf, Mahindra e2o, etc amongst others. Over one hundred technical papers by students and professionals from seven countries have been selected for presentation in this Conference.

The 3 day conference features an exceptional lineup of speakers including Dr Mahesh Krishnamurthy, Illinois Institute of Technology, Dr Yu Yuan, Chair of iTEC Asia, Patric Mccarren, Executive Director, IEEE IAS, US, Michael Poznanski, Chief Technology Officer, Volkswagen India, Naritomo Higuchi, Honda R&D, Japan, Brian McMurray, Director, General Motors, R.K Shenoy, Senior Vice President, Robert Bosch Engineering and Business Solutions, Steven Dom, Manager Global Automotive Siemens, Wensi Jin, Mathworks, Mahesh Babu, Chief Operating Officer, Mahindra e2o, IV Rao, Executive Advisor, Maruti Suzuki India, Dr Chalasani Rao, Director (Retd) General Motors, Rashmi Urdhwareshe, Director ARAI amongst others.

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