Wednesday July 27/11:15/Grande Ballroom

Invited Presentation 7

Chair: Samuel P. Marin, General Motors Research and Development Center

Control Challenges in the Automotive Industry

The automotive buisness is probably the most globally competitive business in the world today. It is complex, important to the nation's economic health, thoroughly integrated in the everyday life of all citizens, and depends strongly on control technology to develop solutions to a myriad of problems.

The speaker will explore the major driving forces for future automotive computer control systems, with particular emphasis on: enabling technologies, environmental and societal influences, customer wants, and the role of control theoretic methodologies.

William F. Powers, Ford Research Laboratory, Ford Motor Company, Dearborn

William F. Powers is the Executive Director of the Ford Research Laboratory at the Ford Motor Company. He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering, a foreign member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences, a Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers and a member of advisory committees for the University of Illinois, Purdue University, and the Department of Energy Defense Laboratories.

After joining Ford in 1979, Dr. Powers served as Program Manager, Car Product Development Specialty Car Programs where he was responsible for the Thunderbird, Cougar, and Mark VII and VIII vehicles, and as Director of Product and Manufacturing Systems in North American Automotive Operations. He was appointed to his present position in 1991.

Dr. Powers was involved with the development of the Saturn Booster guidance system and Apollo mission analyses during the mid-sixties, From 1968-79, he was Professor of Aerospace Engineering and Computer, Information and Control Engineering at the University of Michigan. He received his B.S. in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Florida in 1963 and Ph.D. in Engineering Mechanics from the University of Texas, Austin in 1968.