Driver assistance systems make driving safer and more comfortable. Adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, emergency brake assist, traffic sign recognition and drowsiness detection help to control the vehicle and warn the driver of potential dangers on the road in good time. In this way, the systems help to prevent accidents or at least demonstrably reduce their severity. In addition, assistance systems also reduce stress on longer journeys.

Interview with Philipp Gutbier, Group Manager ADAS – System Functions at ARRK Engineering GmbH. 

Philipp tells us why ADAS can and should be an exciting profession.

Hello Philipp! How long have you been working at ARRK Engineering in the ADAS department and what exactly do you do there?

I have been working in the field of ADAS control units since 2016, starting with driver assistance control units and ending with the current automated driving. However, a lot has changed in the seven years of development. Projects – and the associated control units – have become very complex in terms of their architecture. My beginnings in the development environment were in the area of diagnostics, focussing on defining the fault memory structure of individual components with developers and suppliers. We accompanied the error codes through testing and validation to aftersales.

In my current position as group leader of 27 employees, I actually juggle various topics all day long. My motivated team works in the areas of diagnostics, coding and calibration data management, hardware and software logistics for control units and defect management

ADAS continues to be an absolute hot topic. Which areas are ARRK Engineering focussing on? How do you see the driving experience of tomorrow?

Trend topic hits the spot! Here at the campus in Unterschleißheim, in the north of Munich, we find an exciting and innovative environment with many specialists. In terms of expertise, we have grown very strongly with our customers in recent years. We have evolved from an extended workbench as a project team to a software supplier.

The driving experience of tomorrow will fundamentally change from the model that exists today. The desire for more mobility and the opportunity to use the time associated with this in a meaningful way will become more of a focus for people. The driving experience will be completely redefined here: away from concentrated and self-determined driving and towards more comfortable and medial journeys from A to B. We can leave the driver’s job to the vehicle. 

What does ARRK’s automated driving project landscape look like?

We have many areas of expertise here in Unterschleißheim. Our key skills in the ADAS area include function and software development, software integration and analysis, testing and validation. In addition, there are other project topics that ensure smooth work towards process implementation and data handling.  

How does ARRK Engineering meet the increasing test challenges in the ADAS sector?

In our field, it is particularly important to stay up to date. Only by continuously training our team can we keep up with the latest trends and create secure solutions for our customers.

The potential for innovation in this area is extraordinary. Is this a particular attraction or does the complexity tend to cause difficulties in engineering?

Clearly, it is a challenge for each individual to understand and develop the increasingly complex relationships between sensor technology and signal processing. This is our daily bread and butter and we love the challenge of achieving great things.

In your opinion, is there an automotive future without the involvement of autonomous vehicles? 

This will certainly not happen, because the idea of mobility has changed in terms of generation. People no longer want privatised transport. The whole thing will be more in the direction of carpooling and there will also be changes in communication between vehicles. I’m definitely looking forward to it!

Automotive engineering, computer science, electrical engineering…. What is my ideal background if I want to help develop intelligent vehicles? What do I need in addition to expert knowledge in the development and validation of functions, sensors and platforms?

The most important factors are motivation, team spirit and a fascination with cars. If these factors already exist and you are studying electrical/information technology, control engineering, automotive/mechanical engineering or process/economics or have a comparable background, then this is a very good fit! 

You are integrated into our team from the very first minute and contribute to the success of automated driving – whether in Germany or at one of our other locations such as Cluj in Romania.

Philipp, thank you very much for taking the time to answer our questions!