DEP (Detroit Engineered Products) is an engineering services, product development, software development and talent acquisition company. The company was founded in 1998 in Troy, Michigan, USA. Now, DEP is a global company with footprints in Europe, China, Korea, Japan and India. In conversation with DQ Deep Tech, Basant Sharma, Vice President, DEP provides insights about Deep Tech in India and DEP’s role in the changing tech world.
What are the use cases for DEP products in the changing world?
DEP works with companies on creating innovative solutions to real-world problems. We have worked on a range of solutions over the years, to help clients address the problem they were solving. One of the interesting products we developed was a drone that incorporated radar technology and sensors. It helped deter birds from aerial spaces, that were causing damage to equipment.
Another product that we had designed is an in-cylinder combustion sensing technology. With it, we can monitor cars to emission (CO, NO) levels in real-time. We have also designed a driverless people autonomous people transporter, which is already in operation in a prominent global smart city. DEP also has its own proprietary Computer-Aided Engineering (CAE) platform, DEP MeshWorks. Our parametric technology enables clients to cut down product design time and effort. They can undertake faster CAE iterations, and optimize CAE and Aerodynamic designs. Thus, they can achieve the desired weight and performance goals in record time.
What is the role of Design Enablers in CAE design and Aerodynamic Design in creating Deep Tech products?
It allows users to substantially shorten the time it takes to develop a product by employing morphing technology. Instead of starting from zero, customers can take any previous design and swiftly morph it into a new shape and geometry. One can tune the design according to performance and packaging. Design enablers help speed up much of the process. As a result, any Deep Tech product can be created more quickly by morphing the previous designs and optimising them with our parametric tools.
What is the future of Deep Tech in India?
Creating technology that connects with design thinking to deliver real-world solutions more efficiently is something that India and enterprises all around the world require. Hence, Deep Technology has a lot of potentials. But companies need to invest more to unlock its true potential. We have to develop an entire ecosystem for it to be truly fruitful. Deep Tech in India is still at a nascent stage, as the problems we are solving are still too immediate. The scope that it has to address and find solutions to the bigger problems is something at which we are still at the top of the iceberg.
Deep Tech still lacks a clear narrative. How can STEM Corporates and Education institutes sensitize the concept?
That is very true. Deep Tech is still evolving as a definition, wherein for one school of thought it is design thinking is applied to science and technology to create concepts. For another, it is the application of technology to solve the larger problems using technology, as opposed to the shallow tech or smaller problems. Whichever way you look at it, it is revolutionizing the world. Exhaustive work is being done in critical areas of AI, life sciences, agriculture, aerospace, chemistry, industry, and clean energy. All of this world is towards creating solutions to real-world complex problems.
The current educational system prioritizes the learning concepts over the development of solutions. This approach needs tweaking, such that we are learning concepts, and already thinking of how to apply them to real-world problems. For fields like Deep Technology to thrive, we must establish solution-based learning of technology at educational institutions. Hence, solution-based learning plays an important role in establishing a clear narrative.
Due to time and cost constraints, all Deep Tech solutions are built based on assumptions. We need an entire ecosystem to develop Deep Tech. With more financing and muscle power from corporations and educational institutions, we can continue to produce products based on accurate data to fulfil quality requirements, challenges, and redefine products.
In the current COVID-19 scenario, what are some tech solutions that can help India Inc?
Three of the main challenges that we will see post the pandemic will be:
1) Recovering the time lost in the planned product development
2) Reduced budgetary constraints, and
3) The continuing of remote operations.
Below are some of the solutions that DEP has to help address these in the CAE departments. Companies will be clamouring to get their products to market faster, and this will mean lesser time to design and engineer their products. DEP MeshWorks and Analysis could help reduce the cost and time of design and engineering by utilizing existing designs, and previous models, which can morph to new concepts rapidly, on which virtual analysis can be performed. This will save time as compared to the conventional process relying on starting from scratch and doing more physical validation
There would be a slow process of ramping up staff at the worksite. Further, organisations will face the challenge to train the people virtually and share the model and work package with the team members split virtually. DEP’s process automation on CAE workflows would enable customers to run their CAE operations with the push of a button without having to invest in heavy training or worrying the splitting the work package virtually between the various team members. Process automation is a tailor-fit design management application. It combines various engineering concepts and helps designers with quick solutions that are easy to implement during the early stages of product development.
The author is Laxitha Mundhra. Laxitha is an Executive Content Writer for CIOL. You can read more of her work here.