SAE Brake Colloquium: One Eye on the Future

[dropcap]T[/dropcap]he 36th SAE Brake Colloquium kicks off October 14. The annual event is changing to keep pace with new technology and audience expectations.

This year’s Colloquium features two new formats. On Sunday, two tutorials help industry professionals anticipate the brakes of the future. Zachary S. Tullock of Nissan will speak on advanced driver-assistance systems (ADAS). Jerome Gregeois of Hyundai-Kia will speak about electric vehicles.

Another change takes its inspiration from the TED talks that have taking the Internet by storm. Exhibitors will give fast-paced, informal presentations during lunch or networking breaks. This “New Product Showcase” will be located on the show floor.

Marc LeDuc is a senior technical program developer with SAE. It’s his job to work with industry organizers and an advisory committee to fill the conference with top-notch programming. “We want to make sure that our traditional, well-established technical sessions are maintained as the cornerstone. But then we have the opportunity to engage the attendee in a different manner when it comes to adjacent technology like bearings, ADAS and electric powertrain,” he says.

[pullquote]The Colloquium will have 75 exhibitors, 81 technical presentations, and six panels.[/pullquote]

According to LeDuc, the major goal of the event is to be a “catalyst for conversation” between the automotive OEM and the brake supplier community.

In that spirit of conversation, SAE has also added more panel discussions. After a short presentation, attendees can ask questions to guide the panelists toward the topics that are most pressing to brake professionals. This format creates “a session much more geared to an audience,” according to LeDuc.

Traditional technical sessions are still a strong point of the Colloquium. Presentations will address friction and vibration, brake component design, and brake emissions, among other topics.

The keynoter will be Kelly Funkhouser. LeDuc is excited to hear her speak. Her research on “customer acceptance and understanding of new technology, including advanced brake technology” will “allow the engineering community to better understand what the customer is thinking” and how to develop products that are accepted by the consumer.

Palm trees and golf: The view from the JW Marriot

This year’s event takes place at the JW Marriot in Palm Desert, California. LeDuc anticipates a “holistic experience.” Golf, restaurants, and places to gather in the evening are all onsite.

Next year’s event will be in Orlando, Florida between Sept. 22 and 25. In general, LeDuc says, the event will move back and forth between the West Coast and the southern East Coast, in locations that are easy for Asian and European attendees to fly into.

LeDuc sees a bright future for the Colloquium, in part because he anticipates a period of opportunity and change within the brake industry. Changes in technology to create autonomous vehicles, the next generation of propulsion, and additional regulations will all create a strong need for brake professionals to network and learn from each other.

LeDuc invites feedback. “We encourage any attendee to come share thoughts, ideas, questions, concerns,” he says. “What subject matter is critical? Who is doing interesting work?”

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Ben Nussbaum
Ben Nussbaum

Ben Nussbaum, Chief Content Officer of The Brake Report, has more than 20 years experience in publishing. He was the founding editor for USA Today's line of special interest magazines and the founding editor for i5 Publishing's newsstand one-off magazine program. He lives outside Washington, D.C. Email him at [email protected].