7:30AM Registration & Morning Coffee

8:30AM Chairs Opening Remarks

Two Sides Of A Great Divide – Complexity Reduction Whilst Achieving Intelligent Individualism

Scott Ziolek, Principal Engineer Seating New Technology, Hyundai-Kia America Technical Centre & Chair of SAE Human Accommodation & Design

  • Identifying the complexities that the customer really values: best fabrics, skilled embossing, high-end styling and a designer touch and feel?

8:50AM Integrated Safety – How The Cockpit Of A Vehicle Is Inherently Tied To Autonomous Vehicle Performance

Tony Gioutsos, Director Portfolio Developer Autonomous Americas, Siemens PLM Software

  • What is integrated safety
  • Tools for analysis
  • Definition of Performance
  • Example – Automatic Emergency Braking activation yet still have a crash occur
  • Seating configuration robustness

9:10AM The Drive To Cut Weight: How To Achieve The Best Material Optimisation & Value Optimisation: Combining Optimization & Modern Product Development Methods To Achieve A Lightweight Design

Edwin Pope, Global Lightweighting Principal Analyst, IHS Markit

  • Reviewing new structure materials and manufacturing processes for lightweight seat structures
  • Increasing usage of lightweight and composite materials such as magnesium, high strength steel (HSS) and carbon fibre to reduce the overall weight of seating system.
  • Opportunities for metal replacement with multi-material systems
  • Reducing the number mechanisms – whilst increasing functionality
  • How OEMs have taken advantage of material innovation: Case Study Reverse Engineering
  • How further multi-material design can unlock limitations of conventional design.

9:30AM Seat Benchmarking Creating A Digital Twin 

Dr Samy Panneerselvam, Technical Director Full Seat System Digital Twin, Caresoft Global Inc &

Steve Jakubiec, Subject Matter Expert, Caresoft Global Inc

  • Non-destructive methods for automotive benchmarking for automotive seating using high energy scan technology
  • Plastics, Structures and Frames, Analysis of Structures
  • An advanced ability to understand the design intent of the components and assemblies
  • FE Model – Joining techniques and material properties: Analysis and simulations
  • Case Study Tesla Model X

9:55AM Automotive OEM Seating System Strategies For A 2025-2030 C.A.S.E. World

Vishwas Shankar, Research Manager – Business Strategy & Innovation Group, Frost & Sullivan

  • Understand the primary, secondary, tertiary CASE drivers of seating system in 2020-2030 including lightweighting, new material strategies, modular construction.
  • Personalization of seating system targeting health & wellness, vegan, etc. via innovations in structures, mechanism, foam, surface materials.
  • OEMs and Tier-1 Suppliers focus on product differentiation via targeting new seating attributes ultra-lightweight with CFRP/Plastic, Self-Healing/Self-Cleaning, AI powered.
  • Focus on Seating technology innovations for an entirely new class and emerging segments of robotaxis, autonomous shuttles, flying cars in additional next-gen legacy models

10:15AM Thread Forming Solutions For Emerging Technologies In Seating Assemblies

Zack Lanman, Thread Forming Product Manager, ATF Inc

  • Solutions for sensors and electronics
  • Multi-material fastener joints
  • Carbon Fiber Composites
  • Current issues in seating market

10:35AM Morning Networking Break In The Exhibition Area

11:00AM Will The Entire Seat Of The Future Be Glued Together: Designing The Vehicle Interior Of The Future

Syed Mahdi, Scientific Principal & Team Leader in the Product Development Team, Henkel North America

  • In the future, our vehicles will be much more than just daily transportation. They’ll function as our living rooms and offices, too.
  • learn more about the adhesives that will make the vehicle interiors of the future possible.
  • Take a closer look at how adhesives will enable these vehicle interiors of the future. As more autonomous vehicles enter the market, the nature of the vehicle interior will change, becoming an extension of our homes and offices. Consumers will demand increased comfort and enhanced aesthetics.
  • Success depends on being better—lighter, faster, stronger, and more reliable—than the competition. As the global leader in adhesives, sealants, and functional coating technologies for the automotive seating and interior industry, we will help you get there. We create a competitive advantage for our customers along the entire seat manufacturing value chain.

11:20AM Mass Production Of Thermoplastic Composite Seat Shells Using One Step Hybrid Molding Process

Pal Swaminathan, Technical Marketing & Business Development TEPEX Automotive , Lanxess Corporation 

  • Organosheet with Ultra-thin wall thickness
  • Lightweight design
  • One step hybrid molding process
  • Cycle time less than 60 seconds

11:40AM Edison2: The Effects Of Autonomous Cars On Interior Design

Oliver Kuttner, Founder & CEO, Edison2

  • Changing established market segments through different market expectations.
  • New “shared use” business models effect on interior layout expectations.
  • Effect of climate change on the industry.
  • Opportunities arising from shared autonomous cars.

12.00AM Seat Structures – Light Weighting & Cost Effectiveness Of Advanced High Strength 3rd Gen Steels

Harry Singh, Senior Product Application Engineer, United States Steel Corporation

  • Modern advanced high strength steels offer a wide range of steel grades and manufacturing process choices for the vehicle structural systems. This presentation will discuss:
  • The evolution of lightweight seat structure designs and transitioning from internal combustion to electric vehicles
  • Cost of light weighting versus cost increase of battery for EV range increase
  • The mass saving premium ($ per kg mass saved), for the various light-weighting options for automotive seat structures
  • The light weighting and cost effectiveness offered by advanced high strength 3rd Gen Steels applied to seat structures

12:20PM RECARO Automotive Seating: Safety You Can Sense. And Enthusiasm That Excites You

Michael Murto, Engineering Director, Recaro Automotive Seating

12:45PM Networking Lunch In The Exhibition Area


1:45PM Testing, Inspection & Certification: Seating & Interiors Validation Opportunities

Don Lux, Global Director for the Transportation Sector, Element Materials Technology

  • Alternative Seat Structure Materials – Considerations & Testing
  • Buzz, Squeak & Rattle Correlation concerns
  • Corrosion, VOC’s and other Component Material Issues (Foam, Trim, Plastics)
  • Real Time Simulation, Life Cycle, Durability & Safety Testing
  • Autonomous Vehicle Seating and Interiors of the Future – Validation Challenges
  • Shhh! Test lab secrets they don’t want you to know…

2:05PM Panel Session: Innovative Foam Solutions & Achieving The Right Blend Of Comfort, Safety & Sustainability

Panel Chair: Pasquale Rossi, Foam Specialist – Comfort & Trim,  Faurecia

Scott Ziolek, Principal Engineer Seating New Technology,  Hyundai-Kia America Technical Centre & Chair of SAE Human Accommodation & Design

Missy Pereny, Director – Global Comfort and Engineering Services,  Lear Corporation

Oliver Kuttner, Founder & CEO,  Edison2

Michael Berta, Senior Product Engineer,  Mahindra

  • Reducing thickness without degrading quality and comfort
  • Opportunities for new thinner materials that offer longer life, quality and comfort
  • What is the break-through innovations in foam: cost, profiles and adoptability?
  • Environmental performance, holistic solutions/alternatives and eliminating harmful emissions foam
  • Production, Recyclability
  • Heat dispersion, ventilation and mould-ability
  • The future light weighting opportunities for foam: The future of foam in Next-Gen automotive seating

2:30PM Industry X.0 – Software, Electronics: Speed2Value For Smart Seating Innovations

David Rush, Director Industry X.0, Engineering,  Accenture

  • Engineering the future connected seat
  • Light weighting: Taking more weight out to allow more smarts in
  • The brains of the seat are in software
  • Telling the seat what we want, and trusting it understands
  • Functional Safety: Modeling the Fail-Safe Seat

2:50PM Press Assembly Technologies For Multi-Material Products With Industry 4.0 Protocol Implemented

Troy Waldherr, Vice President Sales for North America, TOX-Pressotechnik LLC

  • Press-in and pierce in elements for connection of parts
  • Clinching/sheet metal joining for assembly of metallic parts
  • Self-pierce riveting
  • Forming and piercing

3:10PM Automotive Seat Simulation

Ramesh Dwarampudi is the Technical Manager for Virtual Seat Solutions at ESI Group, North America

  • Virtual Prototyping of automotive seating
  • Hybrid-Twin, Virtual Acoustics, Virtual Manufacturing
  • Learn how to replace the traditional trial-and-error procedures based on physical prototypes with virtual seat solutions
  • Reduce cost and time-to-market and increase product quality, occupant safety and innovative capability
  • How to guarantee just-in-time delivery
  • Meeting regulation requirement: Standard protocols like EuroNCAP, JapanNCAP, ChinaNCAP and IIHS
  • Ensuring the right occupant posture by predicting virtually the H-Point as well as inclusion of whiplash and comfort simulation
  • Predicting the comfort of your seat

3:30PM Smarter Seat: A Connected Car Cockpit Of The Future

Jakub Kamecki, Vice President of Business Development, TG0

  • Smart performance materials unlocking new paradigms in mobility
  • Connected car cockpit of the future, an intelligent hub for consumer.
  • OEM and fleet gesture, touch and pressure sensing materials easier to manufacture, lower costs.
  • Improving driver and passenger experience, safety, sustainability, accessibility
  • Exploration of autonomous vehicle and big data use cases

3:50PM Afternoon Refreshments, Networking & Product Demonstration By

4:15PM Addressing Challenges In Seat Lightweighting Through Simulation

Brian Brothers, Vice President Technical Operations, Altair

  • Over the past several years the demand on automotive seats have increased in both their functional requirements and system complexity.
  • They are an integral part of the driver’s experience and industry trends have suppliers and OEMs alike rethinking seat design. Couple this with more traditional constrains such as; package space, cost, and timing and delivering a lightweight product can be a challenging puzzle to solve.
  • Industry leaders are turning to a simulation driven design approach to deploy various optimization techniques throughout the design process to meet these increased demands, understand trade-offs, and make better decisions.

4:35PM Comau’s Way To IoT & AI: Building The Factory Of The Future, Now

Kamel I. Rushaidat, Ph.D., Senior Software Engineer/Data Engineer Digital Innovation, Comau 

  • How Comau is approaching the Internet of things and artificial intelligence
  • A synopsis of Comau’s digital IoT platform in grid
  • How Comau is implementing in grid and other solutions into manufacturing plants to create the factory of the future.

4:55PM How To Use Colour And Texture To Boost Vehicle Interior Appeal

Theresa Patton, Senior Marketing Development Manager Color & Additives North America, PolyOne Corporation

  • Balancing sensory factors such as colour, feel, and surface finish to grab consumer attention
  • Materials matter for advanced mobility
  • Discover how materials are making the future of personal mobility possible

5:15PM  Automotive Seat Benchmarking With A2Mac1

Jack Dolan, Executive Vice President – Americas, A2Mac1 – Automotive Benchmarking

  • Summarize conference utilizing A2Mac1’s 3D AutoReverse and in depth analysis
  • Moving from data to knowledge

5:35PM All Attendee Networking Drinks Reception Area


Hosted By



All Attendees Are Cordially Invited To Join Us At The 

Seating And Interior Trim Open HousePost-Summit Workshop

12th MARCH 2020

Vehicles Showcased: Tesla Model 3, Honda Accord, Ford Escape Titanium, Mercedes E-Class



Automotive Benchmarking


This year all Lightweight Automotive Seating Materials & Technology Congress attendees are cordially invited to attend a post-summit workshop hosted by A2Mac1 at their Michigan HQ to participate in a comprehensive benchmark analysis of seat sets. Gain access to benchmarking intelligence as well as a large inventory of reverse engineered seats and parts –  Join a thorough, interactive,  in-house analysis benchmarking exercise.

DISPLAYED PARTS: Seats, Instrument Panels, Center Consoles, Trim Components For Lightweight Automotive Seating Materials & Technology USA 2020 Patriots Only.

Location: A2Mac1 North America, 8393 Rawsonville Rd., Belleville , MI 48111

45 Places Only – Reserve yours now by emailing us at info@we-automotive.com