Robin Irwin, Managing Director for Northern Europe, Konrad Technologies

Konrad Technologies is leading the way in testing the sensors required for driverless cars. Robin Irwin, managing director for Northern Europe, talks about launching Konrad Technologies UK in Dunfermline and why engineers are choosing to work in this fast-paced sector.

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Robin Irwin

Advanced Driving Assistance Systems (ADAS) are a hot topic right now. Our work at Konrad actually spans electronic testing in a very wide range of sectors, from the medical world to high volume manufacturing. However, it’s the autonomous vehicles that are getting all the attention at the moment, both here in the UK and internationally. And for good reason. It’s a challenging and dynamic sector with plenty of serious engineering opportunities.

Konrad Technologies launch in Scotland

We set up the UK business last year to manage our projects in Scandinavia and the UK. Our main base is in Dunfermline with a second office in Bedford. Our plan is to grow the team, so we are on the look-out for engineers with the right skills to contribute. We’re interested in graduates with good degrees in a relevant subject such as electronic engineering, computer science, mathematics or physics.

World leading expertise

More and more car manufacturers are now launching Connected and Autonomous Vehicles (CAV) and need our expertise to test their ADAS systems. The ability to test the sensors that allow vehicles to “see” the road ahead is at the very heart of what we do.

Our aim at Konrad Technologies is to be number one in the world for CAV testing. The company originated in Germany and is already established as a global leader in the sector. The sensors we test include the Radar, LiDAR and vision cameras required for driverless cars.

With the increase in digitisation of road networks worldwide, Konrad can also provide complex test scenarios, such as the simulation of the trunk and rural road networks of Scotland.

Searching out engineering talent

Our automotive projects demand a wide range of engineering expertise. For example, testing an ADAS sub-system can require an optical engineer, software engineer, firmware engineer, automation engineer, mechanical engineer and project manager.

This is such a rapidly developing technology that we cannot work in isolation. We’ve recognised that partnership is essential and work closely with other UK and global companies in the sector. As a National Instruments Platinum Partner we are always seeking talented engineers who are certified (or working towards) LabVIEW Architect (CLA) level.

Global reach

With testing going on across the globe, there are plenty of opportunities for engineers to work on interesting projects. Our customers are typically large global businesses with complex supply chains.

The team here in the UK has close contact with our HQ and development centres in Germany. This is a collaborative and dynamic working environment where colleagues respect and support each other. We give our engineers the opportunity to develop in their roles and where appropriate take ownership of projects or become a technical expert.

Robin’s story

I first came to Scotland from Northern Ireland to work, 13 years ago. Having just graduated, I was holding a number of job offers in different places and had the task of deciding which one to accept. Part of the reason why I made the choice I did was that I thought Edinburgh would be an outstanding place to live and work.

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