This article originally appeared in Auto Components India, June 2018.
Technical surveillance or technical inspection in the automotive industry is fast changing. With stakeholders of the automotive industry the world over, but especially in India, looking to align their business processes with the best global practices, the Germany-based TÜV Rheinland Group finds itself playing the role of catalyst. As a leading international testing service provider, it is in the pursuit of sustained development of safety and quality.
In India, partnering with nodal industries like Automotive Research Association of India (ARAI) and the Central Institute of Road Transport (CIRT), TÜV Rheinland India is helping stakeholders of the automotive industry meet challenges arising from the interaction between man, technology, and the environment. With safety, quality, and protection of the environment as the foundation for all its services, and with the backing of its parent company’s reputation as a leading international testing service provider, TÜV Rheinland India offers a host of services spanning the realm of testing, inspection, certification, training, and consultation.
With presence in over 100 locations, offering more than 2,500 services that include concept consulting; drafting of regulations; overall development of integrated passive safety systems; development and co-ordination of product-specific requirements documents; preparation of loading conditions and prototype plans; validation of computer simulations; and homologation consulting and type testing in accordance with German regulations. Claimed to be the world’s largest technical services company pertaining to homologation and type approval, the company is well-equipped to cater to vehicle and component manufacturers with its global network. TÜV Rheinland India is confident in bringing about a change in the way automotive technical inspection is conducted in India.
TÜV Rheinland India supports the export efforts of vehicle and component manufacturers. This entails getting different approvals from different countries. The company also supports the global manufacturers by helping them comply with Indian approvals. The company, with revenues of Euro 1.9 billion (of which revenue shares from mobility was Euro 486 million) in 2016, has invested Euro 2.4 million in a state-of-the-art dedicated automotive laboratory in Bengaluru to expand its footprint in the country. The new facility has a photovoltaic lab, and laboratories for testing materials, electrical safety, battery and softlines. Its wireless IoT testing laboratory is capable of conducting radiated and conducted signal measurements, and facilitating wireless alliance certification.
According to Heman Desai, Vice President of Mobility at TÜV Rheinland India, the company’s Electro Magnetic Compatibility (EMC) lab is one of the first private bodies authorised to grant such a certification in the country. The lab caters to automotive EMC testing. “Electronic sub-assemblies, vehicle control systems, infotainment systems, advanced driver assistance systems which are making their way to India are not limited to the domestic market alone,” Desai said, hinting at the potential for growth by looking at export markets of Indian Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs).
Drawing attention to Indian exports getting a big boost with the entrance of global OEMs, Desai emphasised the growing importance of regulatory approvals in India. Regulatory approvals, added Desai, have begun to assume even more significance with India recently overtaking Germany to become the fourth largest automobile market in the world. With the company’s experts qualified by the European ministry of transport, TÜV Rheinland is well-equipped to carry out tests in the country across private and national labs, beyond conducting tests at select OEM labs. Desai said, prior to issuing the type approvals, adequate measures are taken to assess labs and their facilities.
“Since India is fast evolving as an export nation, many facilities at par with international standards are making their way here,” he explained. In addition to electromobility, the company is looking at homologation capabilities, component homologation, testing of energy storage systems including batteries. The company is confident of a market pull in the future for wireless communication protocols that include Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS). The safety lab at the Bengaluru facility has provision to test chargers, connectors, and cables, besides aiding in the inspection of the entire charging infrastructure. Training modules have been specially prepared to train technicians on handling high voltage electrical systems.
The company’s focus area of growth are the global market access services, which deal with information from exporters and manufacturers on different regulations across countries. Other areas of growth for TÜV Rheinland India include training and consultation. Electrification testing across EMC, and wireless or energy storage systems are other potential verticals for growth. Tapping on its global experience in inspection and setting of up of safety standards for charging infrastructures, the company is also looking to support the Government of India in devising charging infrastructure standards in India, Desai said.
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