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Industry news roundup - March 2020

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These are strange and challenging times and there is no escaping the news that is currently preoccupying the world. But there are still a lot of positive stories out there - so here’s our roundup of news from the last month. Meanwhile, we hope you are all safe and looking after yourselves.

Manufacturing and Tech

F1 helping address ventilator shortage in UK 

Formula 1 is working with the UK government and other organisations to coordinate an effort by all seven British based teams to address a shortage of ventilators amid the coronavirus outbreak.

The government has officially asked for help from businesses that could help supply ventilators or components, or support with rapid prototyping, design and testing.

Each of the seven British-based teams has capacity due to a lack of racing, and has offered to help with the manufacture of respiratory devices used in the treatment of COVID-19 patients. Other organisations collaborating in this effort are Innovate UK (which provides research funding), High Value Manufacturing Catapult, which connects the academic world to technology businesses, University College London and UCL Hospitals. It is hoped the work of the collective will produce tangible results within a few days.

Source: autosport.com 

Automotive

CAD CAM automotive could create 600 jobs at new Coventry factory

Though it is difficult to know what the future will look like at this point, we were interested to see that automotive design and manufacturing firm CAD CAM Automotive has sealed a joint venture deal with Minsk-based BKM Holding, to create Wave Industries. The move would in theory result in a zero-emissions manufacturing plant in the UK, manufacturing an initial 300 electric buses in 2021, planned to reach 800 buses annually by 2025.

Source: mtdmfg.com

Motorsport

Pro drivers compete with gamers as major motorsport series go virtual.

Formula 1 has launched a series of Esports Virtual Grands Prix, featuring some of the sport’s current drivers, in place of upcoming postponed races. The races will take place on the days when the real Grands Prix were due to run, and will run on the PC version of the official F1 2019 game. The first race, dubbed “Not the AUS GP,” was put on by Veloce Esports, which featured YouTubers lining up against F1 driver Lando Norris, and garnered up to 175,000 viewers at its peak, with 70,000 concurrent viewers in Norris’ Twitch stream. NASCAR and Indycar have adopted the same policy, with the first Esports replacement races having already taken place and drawn sizeable viewing figures – NASCAR’s Twitch channel peaked at 23,000 concurrent viewers with the organisers having almost no opportunity to advertise as they hurried to make the race happen.

Sources: theverge.com and autosport.com

Future Tech

Porsche opens 7 MW rapid charging park in Germany

Porsche Leipzig is expanding the charging infrastructure for EVs in central Germany with its new Porsche Turbo Charging park, claiming that the 7 MW facility is Europe’s most powerful rapid charging park.

It includes four 22 kW AC charging points, twelve publicly-available CCS2 350 kW DC rapid charging points and six 350 kW internal charging stations. A month-long pilot phase will see rapid charging free for users, with up to 100km of range able to be added in five minutes for certain car models. Electric and hybrid vehicles of all brands will be welcome.

Source: Charged EVs 

Graduate

Acing remote job interviews

With many digital tech companies still actively hiring, brands such as Apple, Slack and Microsoft are increasingly moving to remote recruiting, resulting in a need for candidates to gen up on their remote interviewing skills. We liked this piece, with simple but sensible tips for effective interviewing via Skype or other remote networking tools:

Source: Fast Company

Executive

How To Preserve Your Mental Strength When Everything Is Uncertain

Regardless of your role, way of life or situation, it is likely that you may be thinking counterproductively right now. Counterproductive thinking is heightened when we are in possession of only vague and ambiguous information, when something we value is at stake, when we’re stressed and when we’re doing something for the first time. All these factors are with us now, meaning anxiety runs high. This piece presents some ways to preserve mental strength during these challenging times. It’s a useful read, and a bit of a balm:

Source: Forbes