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Autonomous driving - Technology center on the Swabian Alb

Parliamentary State Secretary at the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy Thomas Bareiß, CDU visits the PARAVAN and Schaeffler Paravan

Pfronstetten-Aichelau. The Parliamentary State Secretary in the Federal Ministry of Economics, Thomas Bareiß, CDU, informed himself about future technologies in the automotive industry and also made a stopover at the Pfronstetten-Aichelau Mobility Park for this purpose. In addition to the forward-looking development services of the joint venture Schaeffler Paravan Technologie GmbH & Co.KG, the visit also focused on the planned expansions at the Aichelau location as well as the expansion plans at the Hohentengen location.

“Electromobility and autonomous driving, these are two topics that are driving us forward. The innovative power that I was able to experience here, in the middle of the Neckar-Alb region, really impresses me,” said Thomas Bareiß, who had already visited two major automotive suppliers active in the field of electromobility that morning. "We have a great opportunity here to further expand the lead and thus remain the technology leader in these areas." In this context, the Parliamentary State Secretary was impressed by the Aichelau site and the current plans at the Hohentengen site.

"The future is being co-developed here," said Roland Arnold, Managing Director and founder of PA-RAVAN GmbH and Schaeffler Paravan GmbH & Co. KG. "Space Drive is a key technology for bringing autonomous driving safely to the road." The entrepreneur has already been working on multi-redundant electronic driving and steering systems for 20 years and has developed a driving and steering system from the field of mobility for the disabled that is now considered a key technology for autonomous driving in Level 5 - Space Drive. Since 2018, the system has been further developed at Schaeffler Paravan Technologie GmbH & Co. KG and brought into series production.

In addition to an expansion at the Aichelau location, where Schaeffler Paravan Technologie's "Mobility Innovation Center" is to be built on the outskirts of the town by the summer - a new development center with expanded on-site testing and inspection facilities - a location expansion is also planned in Hohentengen. Schaeffler Paravan Technologie GmbH & Co KG already regularly tests its technology vehicles at the airfield in Mengen before they go into real-life testing, whether on the road or on the race track. This year, Space Drive is also anchored in the DTM regulations. At least two Schaeffler Paravan technology carriers, a Mercedes AMG GT3 and a BMW M6 GT3 - equipped with Space Drive and without a mechanical connection between the steering unit and the steering gear - will be at the starting line.

The adjacent barracks site in Hohentengen in the neighboring district of Sigmaringen offers the ideal conditions for a sustainable industrial location. "The infrastructure to achieve a research and technology center for autonomous driving is excellent," says Roland Arnold, who has already rented buildings on the site. A "campus of the future is to be created on the 85-hectare site," is how he describes his vision of a "Silicon Airfield." The plan is to build a test field for autonomous driving on the completed site together with the site's owner. There, the vehicles equipped with Space Drive can be tested not only on their own, but also in combination with each other.

A campus is to be created for suppliers and OEMs, who can then work and develop on the "Auto-nomous Driving" project on an interdisciplinary basis - especially with a view to developments that are to be sought in the field of artificial intelligence. A small city could be created here, where people can work together on the future of the automobile," says Arnold.

The Parliamentary State Secretary in the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy, Thomas Bareiß, CDU (right) in conversation with Managing Director Roland Arnold, Photo: Schaeffler Paravan
From left Klaus Graf, Schaeffler Paravan, Mayor Reinhold Teufel/ Pfronstetten, Thomas Bareiß, CDU, Parliamentary State Secretary in the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (right) in conversation with Managing Director Roland Arnold, Photo: Schaeffler Paravan
Schaeffler Paravan Technologie uses racing as an important development platform for its technology - from Track to Road, from left Thomas Bareiß, CDU, Parliamentary State Secretary at the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (right) in conversation with Managing Director Roland Arnold, Photo: Schaeffler Paravan
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