CWIEME Chicago Aimed To Spark New Innovations With Dedicated ‘EV Trail’

As electric vehicle (EV) and hybrid electric vehicle (HEV) technology continues to cement itself as the future for the automotive industry, CWIEME Chicago introduced a dedicated HEV & EV Trail at its 2017 exhibition, which took place at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center recently.

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By positioning suppliers of HEV & EV motors along a route through the show, the leading exhibition for coil winding, transformer and electric motor manufacturing aimed to make it even easier and more efficient for visitors and exhibitors to connect with the right business partners.

“The introduction of the EV Trail reflects an important change in the CWIEME community around the world,” says Haf Cennydd, CWIEME portfolio director. “We are seeing increased attendance from automotive OEMs – Tesla Motors is now a regular participant – while exhibitors are launching new products, tailored to the needs of hybrid and electric vehicle motor designers.”

At CWIEME Berlin in June, ArcelorMittal launched the second generation of its iCARe® electrical steels, while Essex Furukawa presented its new high voltage winding wire – both specifically for EVs.

CWIEME Chicago also hosted a series of special sessions that focused on key electric motor and powertrain developments, as well as advancements in core adjacent EV technologies, from battery technology to interoperability. The discussions were led by speakers from McKinsey, Tesla, Mississippi State University, Protean Electric, DHX Machines, University of Kentucky, Charged EV and more. Together, they looked to explore the opportunities and challenges in making EV the dominant reality across domestic and commercial transportation systems over the next five years.

Once previously a relatively niche application for electric motors, hybrid and electric vehicles are rising in popularity. According to a McKinsey & Company seminar at CWIEME Berlin, more than 200,000 electric vehicles were sold in Europe last year – a 110% increase from 2014. While they still represent only 2% of the overall automotive market, sales are on a growth curve – moving from innovators to early adopters. In a 2016 McKinsey survey, 30- 45% of US and German vehicle buyers said they would consider an EV purchase in the near future.

“Governments around the world have pledged to reduce CO2 emissions, while metropolitan mayors in cities, such as Mexico City, Paris and London, are taking a strong stance on air quality in their regions,” said Prof. David Greenwood of Warwick Manufacturing Group at CWIEME Berlin. “Consumers are thinking twice about purchasing diesel cars they might not be able to drive everywhere they want to. At the same time, consumers are starting to realise that EVs are quieter, more comfortable and have better driving characteristics.”

Cennydd adds, “rapid technological progress combined with tipping points in consumer behaviour make it difficult to predict exactly when the EV market will reach its potential but we are seeing a lot of investment in electric motor design, materials and manufacturing for this application. Since it is such a new area, there is not an established supply chain, meaning there are huge opportunities for the CWIEME community to grow along with the market. We look forward to supporting this growth.”

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