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Bosch, BME Launch Center for Training Next-gen Engineers

Automotive

The official launch of the Competence Center for Innovative Vehicle Technologies.

Bosch and the Budapest University of Technology and Economics (BME) inaugurated their Competence Center for Innovative Vehicle Technologies, a state-of-the-art automotive test lab dedicated to the research and development of next-generation electric powertrains, on March 29. The collaboration aims to provide cutting-edge training for 60-80 university students per year, developing engineers capable of solving real-world challenges and creating future technologies.

The Bosch Group and BME have been working together for almost 15 years, with the competence center representing the latest milestone in that ongoing collaboration. It has the potential to impact the world of electromobility significantly, bringing together the resources, expertise, and vision of Bosch and BME to create a space for groundbreaking research, innovation, and education, the partners say.

The collaboration will not only benefit them but also help shape the future of the automotive industry as a whole, they say.

“Bosch’s long-term strategy is to strengthen the link between higher education, industrial research, and development by building a unique innovation ecosystem,” András Kemler, managing director of technical areas and location manager at Robert Bosch Kft, said at the launch.

“We want to actively contribute to the training of the new generation of engineers so that together, we can make even more effective progress in solving the challenges of the future.”

The Competence Center for Innovative Vehicle Technologies will concentrate on developing powertrains for electric vehicles. This focus is in response to the growing global demand for more efficient, environmentally friendly transportation solutions. As the world faces increasing environmental concerns and the urgent need for sustainable solutions, the center’s focus on electric powertrain technology becomes even more critical.

The center will develop a classically styled test car with the latest electric powertrain technologies as an R&D project.

Solving Real Challenges

Máté Zöldy, head of the BME MSc Vehicle Engineering Committee, emphasized the importance of active and multi-level cooperation with leading industrial companies in training engineers capable of solving real challenges.

“Through industrial research assignments, academics engage with students and engineers in answering research questions, and first-hand experience is transferred through education,” he said.

“The aim is to improve the efficiency of electric powertrains, increase range, and make the available battery capacity and energy consumption more predictable, making charging needs and getting to the destination more predictable,” Zöldy added.

As part of the collaboration between Bosch and BME, a new 350 sqm office space has been built within the competence center. This state-of-the-art facility was designed in line with the “New Way of Working” concept introduced by Bosch. It features an open office layout, what they call “house-in-house” meeting rooms, a soundproof library room for contemplation, and a “work café” that functions as a community, dining, and collaboration space.

Deputy State Secretary for Innovation László Bódis of the Ministry of Culture and Innovation praised the initiative, saying the collaborative space creates “an inspiring working environment that enhances the efficiency of individual and group work and supports collaboration.”

The center will develop a classically styled test car incorporating the latest electric powertrain technologies as a unique R&D project. The endeavor represents a bold step forward in the quest for more efficient, eco-friendly transportation solutions. Bosch’s Kemler explained the significance of the project.

Evaluate and Refine

“The components of the electric powertrain will be interchangeable in a modular way, allowing for accurate testing and optimization of the powertrain’s operation, thermal characteristics, and range. This innovative approach will allow us to evaluate and refine various electrical components more accurately, ultimately leading to better overall performance and efficiency in electric vehicles,” he explained.

Digital data collection will take place not only on the chassis dynamometer at the center but also under real conditions on the ZalaZone test track and even at one of the world’s most famous international vintage motor racing events. This real-world testing is essential in ensuring the developed technologies can be effectively integrated into future electric vehicles.

The collaboration between Bosch and BME aims to provide students with the knowledge, skills, and experience necessary to tackle real-world challenges and contribute to developing innovative vehicle technologies. Zöldy highlighted its impact.

“Active and multi-level cooperation with leading industrial companies is one of the keys to training engineers who can solve real challenges. The Competence Center for Innovative Vehicle Technologies will help cultivate a new generation of skilled engineers ready to shape the future of transportation,” he predicted. “Active and multi-level cooperation with leading industrial companies is one of the keys to training engineers who can solve real challenges.”

As the world continues to face environmental challenges and the demand for greener transportation solutions grows, industry players believe that centers like this will play a vital role in shaping the future of electromobility. By fostering close cooperation between industry leaders and academia, Bosch and BME say they are helping to ensure that the next generation of engineers is well-equipped to meet the challenges and opportunities of a rapidly evolving transportation landscape.

As the world grapples with the pressing need for environmentally friendly solutions, collaborations like this one will prove increasingly important in driving innovation and shaping the future of the automotive industry.

This article was first published in the Budapest Business Journal print issue of April 11, 2023.

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