CAAT Tracks

Center for Advanced Automotive Technology

 January 2015
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BMW of North America to Participate in the 2015 CAAT Conference


We are very pleased to announce that BMW of NA has accepted our invitation to provide a technical presentation at the 2015 CAAT Conference. The presentation will focus on the BMW i3 and will include information on both the electric powertrain and use of carbon fiber to reduce vehicle weight.


The CAAT's annual conference will take place on Friday, May 1, 2015, at Macomb Community College's South Campus in Warren, MI. Be sure to mark your calendar to attend this increasingly popular annual automotive event that saw a 50% increase in attendance last year! The event will start with breakfast and end with lunch. Additional details, including registration information, will be included in our February issue.


For more information on the 2015 CAAT Conference, including our speaker lineup and hotel and travel reimbursement information for eligible attendeesclick here.

CAAT and CA2VES ATE Centers Collaborate on Electric Vehicle Safety Visualization Project

The CAAT recently collaborated on a visualization project with a sister ATE Center, the Center for Aviation and Automotive Technical Education (CA2VES), located at Clemson University. CA2VES is focused on developing virtual reality based applications to support the needs of curriculum. The two ATE Centers worked together to develop four virtual reality based learning modules related to electric vehicles:

  • High Voltage Disconnect Switches
  • High Voltage Checks
  • Battery Pack Removal
  • High Voltage Safety Gloves

Any electric vehicle training needs to contain information on working safely with high voltage. These modules were developed to supplement existing curriculum and are particularly helpful for those instructing on electric vehicle safety without physical hardware to demonstrate on. The learning modules can be accessed for free from the CAAT Resource Library.

Recently Held CAAT Activities

CAAT Attends the 2015 North American International Auto Show & Technology Showcase

Several members of the CAAT management team attended the 2015 North American International Auto Show (NAIAS), including the Technology Showcase which featured many of the flash-forward technologies that will impact connectivity, automation, and efficiency in future generations of vehicles. Companies from around the world exhibited their breakthrough technologies, provided product demonstrations, revealed fresh designs, and participated in panel discussions. Showcase attendees were able to ride along in the world's first full-size, working 3D printed car. Students from Wayne State University (CAAT partner) and several other Michigan universities displayed and demonstrated solar technology, racing performance, fuel mileage efficiency, and automotive design.


In addition, nine Macomb Community College students, including three young women from the CAAT's Electric Vehicle Development Certificate program, attended the 13th Annual Inforum NAIAS Breakfast, which was attended by approximately 800 guests, including 100 students, and was sponsored by Inforum, a professional women's alliance. The event featured speakers Werner Struth, member of the Board of Management, Robert Bosch GmbH; Michelle Krebs, senior analyst,; Sheryl Connelly, global consumer trends and futuring manger, Ford; and Suzanne Dickerson, director of international business development and marketing, Clemson University International Center for Automotive Research (CU-ICAR). 

Macomb Community College Staff and Students Attending the 2015 NAIAS Breakfast Were (left  to right) Gail Turri, Manager, Career & Technical Education; Kathleen Williams, Employer Development Specialist; Karen Dullinger, Student; Erica Ray, Student; Tess Akers, Student; Morgan Sommers, Student (back); Tamisha Banks, Student; Lama Kadoura, Student; Shahad (Shay) Murad., Student (back); Sheryl Jones, Student; and Valerie Bradley, Student.


Immediately following the breakfast, these lucky students participated in Inforum's AutomotiveNEXT industry group's AutomotiveNEXT 1:1, an event that brings together female students, young professionals, and top executives to explore a range of careers in the automotive industry. The students not only received some great insight from business professionals, but they also met and spoke with a surprise guest: recently elected 12th District Congresswoman Debbie Dingell! 

What's New?
What's New on the CAAT Website?

In December, we added the Automated Crash Avoidance Technologies Available Now page to the Technologies section of our site. It contains a list of automated crash avoidance technologies currently available and offered by most manufacturers. Included in each technology is a description of the technology, as well as an educational video of the system. Click the image to the left or the link above to check out this unique page today!

In December, we added an educational video to our Power Electronics page. This video explains the powertrain components found inside a Formula E racecar and how they function together. Although the video is focused on a Formula E car, the powertrain configuration is very similar to a consumer electric vehicle and is a good tool to visualize how an electric powertrain functions; especially when it's combined with the content on our Power Electronics page. To view this video, click the image on the right or the link above.

What's New in the CAAT Resource Library?

In December, 3 resources were added to our Resource Library. Listed below are the resources added in December:

Browse the CAAT Resource Library

Stay Connected
Featured Information

Did You Know?

Did you know the Governor's Office of Energy Development in Utah has launched a website to provide electric vehicle (EV) information to EV owners in the state? This educational and informative site contains a guide of electric vehicles available in the state, charging station locator, savings calculator, and more. To learn more about this great interactive website, click the link above.

Did you know New Jersey lawmakers will soon vote on legislature to regulate automated/self-driving vehicles in their state? This bill will establish driverless licensing standards, as well as insurance, safety and operation standards for new vehicles. Currently Michigan, California, Nevada, and Florida have already passed similar 

legislation regulating self-driving cars. It is speculated once the law is passed, research will be conducted at a dormant Army base by manufacturers and Princeton's Autonomous Vehicle Engineering team. Click here to learn more about the initiative.

Did you know that an Audi A7 concept car drove autonomously over 500 miles from San Francisco to the 2015 Consumer Electronic Show in Las Vegas (SOURCE)? In highway conditions, this high-tech autonomous vehicle is able to pilot itself entirely from speeds of 0-70 mph and can even pass other vehicles. However, it is not able to drive itself in city/urban traffic and warns the driver to take over control when approaching these conditions. If the driver fails to take control, the car will turn on its flashers and pull over. To perform autonomous driving, the Audi uses a variety of sensors including the standard long-range radar currently used in their adaptive cruise control systems, more radar sensors, a laser sensor, several cameras, and GPS. Several journalists were able to go along for the ride and were thoroughly impressed with the vehicle. To learn more about autonomous vehicles, visit our Automated and Connected Vehicles page or the respective section in our Resource Library.

Did you know Fox News has compiled a list of the techiest features offered in 2015 model year cars? Click here to view their list. 

EV Myth Busters


Myth: There isn't enough lithium in the world to make all the new batteries.

Fact: Even in a worst-case scenario of zero battery recycling, aggressive EV sales, no new mining methods or sites, existing lithium stores will be sufficient for projected EV production for the next 75 years (SOURCE). See an analysis on lithium and EVs at Also, lithium comes from many countries (24 percent is found in the United States), so we won't be dependent on any one global region.


Ford's C-MAX Lithium Battery Pack

Ford's C-MAX Lithium Battery Pack


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