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16/12/2014 | Paris

PSA Peugeot Citroën, École Nationale Supérieure de Création Industrielle, STRATE École de Design, École de Design de Nantes Atlantique and the TALM Le Mans Sound Design master’s programme present the results of three years of creative research within the OpenLab Design programme on autonomous and connected cars, one of PSA’s strategic areas of innovation.

  • 2012 : Visual interpretations of PSA Peugeot Citroën’s scientific work help focus the teams of specialists on two shared, federating avenues to the car of the future.
  • 2013 : Interactive interface concepts, adapted to driving, guide the styling choices for vehicle human-machine interface (HMI) systems.
  • 2014 : The most appropriate driver/vehicle/connected object proposals are integrated in innovation programmes on autonomous cars, connected services and user interface systems.

In 2025, vehicles will be autonomous and connected. Both on-board and remote human-machine communication will be carried out via intuitive multimodal interactions using a mobility assistant. Autonomous vehicles will travel in road trains on the motorway to optimise fuel consumption, share information over dedicated social networks and offer a new on-board experience for drivers and passengers.

Created by PSA Peugeot Citroën in 2012, the OpenLab Design programme brings together Group engineers and student designers in open innovation workshops at France’s major design schools. The objective of this programme, situated at the leading edge of innovative design methodologies, is to integrate the design aspect upstream in the development of HMI systems and thereby anticipate new mobility uses.

In 2014, the programme focused more specifically on three projects :

The Internet of Robjects®, or communicating robot-objects
How can a system based on data exchanges between vehicles and connected objects anticipate my mobility needs (vehicles/schedules/trips) so that I get where I need to go on time, in good spirits, without having to plan the itinerary?

Avacar®, or the mobility assistant
How can people and vehicles communicate in a natural way, both on-board and remotely? Thinking back to the red diodes on the "Knight Rider” television series, what could the artificial intelligence of mobility embodied by Avacar® look like?

Social robots®, or vehicle-to-vehicle communication
What functions could sound and light perform aside from signalling, alerting, and allowing motorists to see and be seen, so that individuals can communicate from vehicle to vehicle without the risk of confusion?

Design, a strategic lever for innovation

In the face of technological complexity, design needs to be integrated into corporate strategies to explore new uses and new ways of relating to innovation. Designers give meaning to products and services by observing how people live and creating the conditions for an optimal, memorable experience. In the area of research, the schools involved in the programme agree with PSA Peugeot Citroën on the need to :
-    Involve designers upstream in the development of corporate innovation strategies.
-    Acquire knowledge through experimentation with materials and intuitive interaction methods that structure and transform objects. Examples include smart textiles, emotional communication devices using sound and light, and robotised objects (or Robjects®).
-    Use emerging joint design-production processes such as fab labs* that give everyone an opportunity to invent and manufacture products.

The French design schools’ objective within the OpenLab Design programme is to contribute to the emergence of a new profession – that of the designer-researcher – which will have its full place in multidisciplinary R&D teams in the years ahead.

Open Innovation at PSA Peugeot Citroën      
PSA has adopted an Open Innovation strategy to remain in the vanguard of automotive products and services and ensure that it is closely involved in future scientific discoveries. Open Innovation entails developing and managing relationships with a variety of ecosystems, from individuals and businesses to the academic world and institutions.
As part of its relationship with the academic ecosystem, the Group launched StelLab in 2010. The OpenLab Design programme is part of this network of open labs and academic chairs.

StelLab is designed to strengthen PSA's scientific partnerships with publicly-funded laboratories involved in leading-edge research.

The OpenLab network operates worldwide to respond more effectively to the societal, environmental and economic challenges associated with the car of the future. In this way, it benefits from the shared human and experimental resources of PSA Peugeot Citroën and its partner laboratories.


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