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Innovative textile based heating system for technical applications with a special focus on Electric Vehicles

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - MAXITHERM (Innovative textile based heating system for technical applications with a special focus on Electric Vehicles)

Reporting period: 2015-05-01 to 2015-08-31

The objective of MAXITHERM is to contribute to the expansion of Electric mobility by extending Electric Vehicles autonomy. We propose a heating system for EV that reduces electricity demand of heating systems in by 30% while maintaining passenger comfort. MAXITHERM is a heating system based on a technical textile composed by a blend of electrically conductive and non-electrically conductive fibres that is integrated within the structure of the vehicles. It provides direct and fast heat to passangers and is 32% more cost efficient that current solutions.

During the implementation of the 4 months phase 1 project we have carried out the following activities:

- We have contacted key stakeholders from the electric automotive industry to understand the technical requirements needed for our product and we have adapted the prototype to meet those requirements.

- We have created a consortium with two other companies in order to gather all the technical and commercial skills needed to bring this product to the market. We have jointly designed a 24 months’ work plan to launch Maxitherm at the end of 2018.

-We have registered the TradeMark and we have clarified the procedures in order extend our patent to other target countries.

-We have understand the certification procedure needed to become a supplier of the automotive industry and we have started the certification process for our company in order to become supplier of the automotive industry

-We have adapted our commercial strategy to the singularities of the automotive industry

After this study we have validated the commercial and technical viability of our innovation and we will pursue the project idea.
Main worked performed during the reporting period.
1.- Technical and regulatory tasks

ACTIVITY 1.1 Clarify the current regulation requirement in the EU for the integration of an electronic device in an Electric Vehicle  RESULT: We have contacted several certification companies and we have already initiated the registration process with the company QAS-Company AG for ISO:9001.

ACTIVITY 1.2 Understand the technical requirements for electrical devices demanded by European EV manufacturers.  RESULT: The technical requirements of Maxitherm have been adapted to the needs of Electric Vehicles thanks to the collaboration with our partner EAUTO.

ACTIVITY 1.3 Partner search: selection of key collaborators which will participate in the industrial scale up of MAXITHERM technology  RESULT: We have contacted with many potential partners interested in taking part in the innovation. At the end we have created a consortium with “CHMUELLER”, a German SME specialized in providing cabin interiors to the main automobile manufacturers, and with “EAUTO” a Slovenian SME specialized in developing technology for the electric automotive industry.

ACTIVITY 1.4 Scaling up working plan: bring all partners together to define a concrete working plan for the development of MAXITHERM with the objective of take MAXITHERM into the market in 2 years.  RESULT: a 24 month work plan has been developed jointly between the three partners, and will be further developed for the phase 2 proposal.

2.- Business related Tasks –
ACTIVITY 2.1 Subcontract a Market Study for new HVCA for EV including the potential market for the solution currently under development. Identify the main market barriers within the automotive industry.  RESULT: We have gain good insight into the electric automotive industry and we are more convinced that Maxitherm will have a good response in the market.

ACTIVITY 2.2 Identify the key stakeholders from the EV industry such as EV manufactures, components suppliers, EV associations.  RESULT: Key stakeholders have been identified together with the new partners, CHMUELLER and EAUTO, two companies with stablished position in the sector of electric vehicles.

ACTIVITY 2.3 Develop a commercial and exploitation plan for MAXITHERM (based on findings from 2.1) in order to ensure a fast market entry within the automotive industry.  RESULT: a new commercialization strategy has been defined together with our new partner – CHMUELLER- In the new strategy we will focus on targeting one specific vehicle manufacturer and adapt our innovation to one model in order to facilitate the integration.

ACTIVITY 2.4 With the support of experts on IPR: clarify the patent/registration needed to protect MAXITHERM when commercialized outside the EU, with a special focus on Japan.  RESULT: The Word trademark for our innovation has been registered as Maxitex-Therm with date 8th of June 2015 in the Official Germany body for Patents and Trademarks (Deutches Patent-und Markenamt). The IPR strategy and its expected costs and timeline has been clarify.

ACTIVITY 2.5 Develop a complete Business Plan for MAXITHERM, defining in detail the expected revenues and streams and costs structure, including a Marketing Plan, IPR management plan, an Economic Viability study and a personalized Market Study.  RESULT: Maxitherm business plan has been updated.
The commercialization of Maxitherm will contribute to develop our company (see table 2c) and our partners´ companies and to create highly qualified jobs. Besides that, the development of Maxitherm will have a wider socio economic impact in Europe. Our innovation will contribute to the expansion of Electric Mobility in Europe, since it will provide a significant range extension, especially in winter, which is currently the main drawback for the expansion of electric vehicles in Europe at the moment.