Thursday April 2022
Increase homologation knowledge for design engineers
An operating process is guaranteed by solid and standardized skills
Education of design engineers
My name is Philip Priem, I have been a certification engineer in the automotive industry for 25 years. I can say that I have become an expert in knowing the applicable European (CE) and UN (ECE) regulations. I work closely with Technical Services (for testing) and Approval Authorities (for certification).
Products placed in European (and other) markets must comply with certain legal requirements. For vehicles, these requirements are established at the European Community level. Once approved, they are valid throughout the EU. The process of obtaining such approval is called type approval or homologation.
I currently work for a large vehicle manufacturer and more specifically for the approval of its original accessories. My challenge is to create a faster approval process in accordance with EU requirements. One of the obvious issues was the lack of homologation knowledge among design engineers.
Design engineers need to understand performance and quality but also homologation requirements. The knowledge of homologation requirements is sometimes lacking due to very theoretical training. This can lead to delays in development, unnecessary design changes, and worst-case product recall. Some actions were necessary to solidify and standardize skills.
By involving engineers in physical homologation testing, creating a common schedule with homologation testing activities (both on-site and on-site), and increasing face-to-face discussions with experts, we not only improved their knowledge, but achieved better design, greater efficiency, and ultimately increased motivation.