Features & Interviews

Five minutes with… Rob Brown, Global Head of Automotive, BSI

21 September 2023 #Features & Interviews

Tell us a bit about BSI?

BSI is the business improvement and standards company. Our focus is on sustainability, digital trust and society’s wellbeing. Our 15,000-strong global community – experts, industry and consumer groups, organisations and governments – shapes sustainable answers to the biggest challenges. Our hands-on commercial experience grounds these answers in day-to-day reality and practical insight. And we invest our profits in our founding purpose, making society better.

We achieve our purpose by helping our clients, including in the transport and mobility sector, achieve their objectives. Their progress builds trust and confidence for their customers. It’s a positive cycle. Whether we’re tackling the drivers of climate change, building trust in our digital lives or helping end exploitation, we’re accelerating innovation.

What services do you offer van and truck manufacturers in the area of automated commercial vehicles?

BSI is working with industry and government in a number of ways to support the safe use of automated vehicles and help build trust in them so that society can realise the benefits of this important innovation.

Since 2019, BSI, in its role as the UK National Standards Body, has been working closely with industry, supported by the UK Government Centre for Connected and Automated Vehicles (CCAV), to develop a programme of standards to support safe trialling and development of self-driving, or automated, vehicles. BSI also publishes and feeds into the development of many of the emerging global international (ISO) standards for automated vehicles.

These standards are being used by some manufacturers and operators of commercial vehicles – in the UK and internationally – to help ensure safety when trialling automated vehicles on public roads and off-road (for e.g. at ports).

BSI Assurance Services, the certification division of the business, has been asked to help organizations assess their safety cases for automated vehicle deployment and operations to the specification for assuring the safety of automated vehicle trials and testing (PAS 1881). We have seen increasing interest in organizations looking at a way to demonstrate they are thinking about safety risks when deploying automated vehicles.

Does BSI provide commercial vehicle operators and manufacturers with advice regarding electric vehicle charging certification?

BSI provides a range of solutions to enable trust and confidence in electric vehicle charging infrastructure ranging from standardization to testing and certification. BSI is an UKAS accredited laboratory for EV charger testing and certification. Providing electrical safety testing and certification, BSI supports manufacturers to ensure safety and market confidence in their products.

BSI’s Kitemark™ certification for smart EV chargers combines electrical safety testing with assurance of digital security. We are also developing a programme to support accessibility in EV charging, supporting the development of infrastructure that meets the needs of all electric vehicle users.

We are also working with truck manufacturers and operators to define the new standards needed to help make a smooth and safe transition to zero-emission, battery electric and also hydrogen fuel cell, freight vehicles (HGVs) in the future.

Do you offer the commercial vehicle sector any services around digitalisation?

Digital and cyber security are both key areas for many commercial vehicle manufacturers. BSI is supporting the automotive sector in a number of ways in this respect. This includes responding to the need for improved cyber security management, including development and publication of standards, such as Road vehicles: Cybersecurity engineering (BS ISO/SAE 21434), the world’s first standard designed to support the UN automotive cyber security regulations.

We also support the sector by providing training and consulting to support management of information security through the TISAX (Trusted Information Security Assessment Exchange) approach. Developed by the Association of the German Automotive Industry (VDA), TISAX is a robust, methodical approach to ensuring industry best practices towards security and the exchange of data among suppliers, partners and service providers.

This single framework, based on global best practice, inspires trust by confirming that a supplier has satisfied more than 60 critical controls within the Information Security Assessment (ISA) to safeguard the privacy and security of data being held and shared within this vital ecosystem.

Can you provide any case studies regarding companies you have worked with?

Over the last 12 months, BSI has been working closely with the commercial truck industry, manufacturers and operators of HGVs specifically, to explore how we can support zero-emission road freight operation at scale, beginning with ensuring demonstrations are safe.

BSI’s work here is primarily looking at infrastructure needs for both battery electric and hydrogen powered trucks, such as the design and layout of charging (or refuelling) stations and equipment compatibility, but this extends to the whole life-cycle so from battery design and power supply (for EV) to recharging or refuelling (hydrogen) protocols and safety measures, connectivity and communications between vehicles and the grid, all the way through to maintenance of vehicles

BSI has also been working on standards to support design, manufacture and handling of battery cells, packs and modules with input from multiple original equipment manufacturers.

Rob Brown, Global Head of Automotive, BSI

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