2016 IEEE Transportation Electrification Conference and Expo was a Great Success

By:  Berker Bilgin, ITEC 2016 General Chair

ITEC 2016, held June 27-29, 2016, in Dearborn, Michigan,  brought industry, academia, and the general public together to discuss the advancements, opportunities, and challenges in transportation electrification – one of the most important technological, social, and economical transformative shifts of the century. ITEC 2016 had a comprehensive program with 12 distinguished keynote speakers, 5 professional training courses, 3 tutorials, 9 panel discussions, over 130 paper presentations, and a sold-out exhibition.


ITEC 2016 featured an all-star group of keynote speakers covering the current status and future trends in transportation electrification. ITEC participants were very interested in learning about the vision of the automotive manufacturers in transportation electrification. There was a lot of attention to the presentations from Ford Motor Company, General Motors, and Tesla Motors. Conference attendees also found the presentation given by Infineon on wide band gap power semiconductors interesting. This is - considered an emerging technology in automotive applications to improve the power density and efficiency of power electronic converters. The keynote presentations from automotive suppliers (AAM, Momentum Dynamics, PC Krause and Associates, and Cummins) and academia (University of Maryland and Seoul National University) discussed  detailed solutions on specific applications in electrification. Many of the conference attendees showed serious interest on the presentations from EPTech and General Dynamics Electric Boat- where the electrification technologies for the aerospace and marine industries were discussed. . 

ITEC 2016 hosted five professional training courses and three tutorials offered by internationally renowned experts from industry and academia. The courses and tutorials at ITEC were organized based on the current and future trends in transportation electrification technology. On June 27th, three professional training courses were held in parallel about three major aspects of electrified powertrains: electric motors, power electronic converters, and powertrain functional safety . 

Dr.. Wei Tong from Kollmorgen Corporation presented the course on Mechanical Design of Electric Machines. Dr. Tong is an internationally recognized expert in power and motoin control systems.  Many conference participants from the automotive and electric  machines industry attended this course to learn from his 28 years of hands-on experience with electric machine applications. The second professional training course on Monday was  on Accelerated Lifetime Testing for Power Electronic Modules. This course was taught by Marc Tüllmann, quality manager for automotive modules at Infineon Technologies in Germany. In this course, Tüllmann shared his 16 years of experience in reliability testing of power semiconductor devices. His course was very well received by industry folk. The last course on Monday was on electrified powertrains: functional safety – a very hot topic in transportation electrification. This course was presented by industry experts Jody Nelson, Agish George and Michael Woon from kVA. Powertrain and control engineers from the automotive OEMs and suppliers attended to this course. gnized expert in power and motion control systems. Many conference participants from the automotive and electric

ITEC 2016 had one Professional Training Course on Tuesday . David Farnia from Powersys, JMAG and Dakai Hu from MathWorks introduced the use of system-level simulation for developing a controller for an interior permanent magnet synchronous motor. Three tutorials were held on Tuesday. Dr. Debbie Reeves from MSC Software Company presented sound quality analysis of an electric motor and Prof. Bulent Sarlioglu from University of Wisconsin-Madison discussed the advancements in flux-switching permanent magnet motor technology. These sessions received a lot of attention from electric motor design and control engineers.  On Tuesday, a tutorial on Design-V applied to power electronics was also held. This was quite an interesting tutorial. Egston-Austria, National Instruments and Opal-RT Technologies brought their expertise together to present how to model the power systems in real-time and how to design the power electronics hardware to emulate them. The final Professional Training Course was held on Wednesday morning. Dr. Omer Onar and Madhu Chinthavali presented wireless power transfer systems – a very important and emerging topic in transportation electrification. They also shared  experimental studies performed at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.

 At ITEC 2016, there was significant interest on all short courses and tutorials. Many positive comments from attendes about the quality of these technical sessions was received. Attendees remarked that there was so many great sessions held in parallel that they often had a hard time deciding which session to attend.

With help from the leadership from our organizing committee, ITEC 2016 hosted nine very well organized panel discussions. There was wide range of topics in the panel discussions from transmissions, NVH, charging technologies, motor winding technologies, to grid integration, cybersecurity, and the future of the electrified vehicle industry. We had significant interest from the industry in our panel discussions. Managers and engineers from various organizations participated in the panel discussions either as a panelist or a moderator. These organizations included Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, General Motors, Ford Motor Company, Tesla Motors, GKN, Oerlikon, AAM, Ricardo, Cisco, Roush, FEV, Siemens PLM, Continental, AVL, Infineon, Wolfspeed/Cree, North Caroline State University, Marsilli, Florida Solar Energy Center, BorgWarner, Via Motors, DTE Energy, National Renewable Energy Lab, Oak Ridge National Lab, and Argonne National Lab. A lot of positive feedback from attendees regarding the quality of the technical discussions in the panel sessions was received. 


This year, ITEC had a sold-out exhibition. Hybrid and electric vehicle displays received a lot of attention from attendees. This year featured: Mercedes-Benz C350e Plug-in Hybrid

  • 2017 Lincoln MKZ Hybrid Reserve
  • GM Chevy Bolt
  • 2016 Ford C-Max Energi Plug-in Hybrid
  • 2017 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid displays

Many exhibitors showed their latest products and solutions at ITEC 2016, and received great attention from our attendees. Highlights included Mercedes-Benz R&D presenting their latest inverter design, Oak Ridge National Lab’s display of the prototypes of their motors, inverters and wireless power transfer systems and MacAUTO’s presentation of  the prototype of the hybrid powertrain they designed for GM Chevy Camero for the EcoCAR3 competition. 

The ITEC 2016 exhibition was the place to meet people from the industry. The exhibition floor was the networking center of the conference. For this purpose,lunch and dinner on Monday and Tuesday were on the exhibition floor. In addition, during the afternoon break on Monday, there was an ice-cream station at the exhibit hall. The attendees enjoyed the ice-cream station so much that another ice-cream event was held on Tuesday in the exhibit hall, so that the  exhibitors and attendees could  continue their discussions while enjoying delicious deserts.

ITEC 2016 was a great success with comprehensive technical program, sold-out exhibition, and networking opportunities. I would like to thank everyone in the organizing committee of ITEC 2016 for their dedication and countless hours of work to create this excellent conference. Please join us again next year in one of the most beautiful locations in one of the greatest cities in the United States. ITEC 2017 will be in Navy Pier in Chicago, IL on June 26-28, 2017. We are enthusiastically looking forward to meeting you at ITEC. 



Berker Bilgin is the Research Program Manager in Canada Excellence Research Chair in Hybrid Powertrain Program in McMaster Institute for Automotive Research and Technology (MacAUTO) at McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. He received his Ph.D. degree in Electrical Engineering from Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago, Illinois, USA. He is managing many multidisciplinary projects on the design of electric machines, power electronics, electric motor drives, and electrified powertrains. Dr. Bilgin is the General Chair of 2016 IEEE Transportation Electrification Conference and Expo (ITEC’16). He is currently pursuing his MBA degree at McMaster University DeGroote School of Business.




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