February 26, 2021
SAE SmartBrief
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Need to Know
The ongoing chip shortage should serve as an object lesson for developing domestic production of the batteries needed for upcoming electric vehicles, Ford Motor CEO Jim Farley says. With a trade dispute in South Korea that may pose a threat to supplies of batteries for Ford's planned electric pickup, Farley said in-sourcing of batteries is needed to ensure the smooth introduction of EVs over the next decade.
Full Story: BNN Bloomberg (Canada) (2/24) 
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Mobility News & Trends
Coordination is essential for cities that want to build a shared-mobility transportation system, according to a new report by the Transportation Research Board. The pandemic has created new challenges for public transportation, and agencies need to provide multimodal options and quality service.
Full Story: Government Technology (2/23) 
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The US and Canada plan to coordinate policies on aviation and other modes of transportation with the shared goal of net zero emissions by 2050, according to a joint statement by US Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg and Canadian Transport Minister Omar Alghabra. The two leaders are reaffirming their countries' cooperation on transportation policies.
Full Story: Railway Age online (2/25) 
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NASA, FAA partner on eVTOL, drone technology
NASA and the Federal Aviation Administration are teaming up to develop electric vertical takeoff and landing aircraft and drone technology. The goal is to create new aircraft that can transport cargo and people in urban settings.
Full Story: The Press of Atlantic City (N.J.) (tiered subscription model) (2/24) 
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NASA's Mark Kirasich says SpaceX, Blue Origin and Dynetics have submitted "incredible proposals" for the agency's lunar lander program, with a selection decision coming in the "very near future." The Human Landing System program received $850 million for the current budget cycle, which was short of NASA's request.
Full Story: Space News International (2/25) 
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The flammable liquid electrolytes that in lithium-ion batteries powering electric vehicles could have a solid, safer counterpart. The new battery being developed by Silicon Valley startup QuantumScape could also address other current limitations, such as power storage and weight.
Full Story: MIT Technology Review (tiered subscription model) (2/24) 
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Cybersecurity in the automotive industry faces challenges as around 280 million vehicles now are connected to the internet, according to the BlackBerry 2021 Threat Report, which identified several issues and offered recommendations. "Securing vehicles from cyber threats becomes increasingly difficult with every additional network connection, electronic component, and software-driven system," the report says.
Full Story: SAE International (2/26) 
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Heavy Duty / Commercial Vehicle
Autonomous truck startup TuSimple has filed confidentially with the Securities and Exchange Commission for an initial public offering. The company has not disclosed a recent valuation, but a 2019 funding round valued it around $1.2 billion.
Full Story: The Wall Street Journal (2/25) 
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Regulations & Standards
Electric vehicles are the future of transportation, writes US Rep. Yvette Clarke, D-N.Y., but low-income neighborhoods and communities of color need to be included in the infrastructure planning from the beginning. Clarke has introduced legislation, the Electric Vehicles for Underserved Communities Act, to ensure that underserved areas will have 200,000 charging stations by 2030.
Full Story: The Hill (2/24) 
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Smart Cities
Major savings predicted for smart traffic systems
Connected traffic management systems that leverage artificial intelligence could help cities save $277 billion by 2025 while reducing congestion and emissions, according to a report by Juniper Research. The report also notes that cities are investing more in smart parking systems.
Full Story: Cities Today (2/23) 
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Workforce Development & Leadership
A Michigan high school is preparing to offer a powersports technology class, which will offer students hands-on training on small engines, including boats, motorcycles, snowmobiles and lawn equipment. Director of Career and Technical Education in the district, Jim Rummer, said there is high demand for professionals to work on that type of equipment.
Full Story: WPBN-TV/WTOM-TV (Traverse City, Mich.) (2/25) 
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SAE News
Experience Mobility Re-imagined with MOVE America Virtual
Two days. 72 speakers. 100 live and on-demand sessions. 18 conference themes. Join SAE International as we support and attend MOVE America Virtual and experience mobility re-imagined. Register to attend March 17 and 18 and discover what the future holds with the companies, people and leaders developing the world of tomorrow.
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On SAE Tomorrow Today, we spoke with Andreas Wendel, Vice President of Engineering at Kodiak, to discuss how they became a developer of reliable self-driving long haul trucks on the highway and the many elements required to develop safe vehicles that perform consistently, delivering freight to commercial customers with a 100% on-time delivery record.
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Impossible is potential. Impossible is temporary. Impossible is nothing.
Muhammad Ali,
professional heavyweight boxer, social activist, entertainer, philanthropist
February is Black History Month
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