Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Tesla Greece R&D group to tap into strong local electrical engineering talent

Tesla’s engineering and design teams are primarily based in the US and especially in California, but the company has been expanding internationally over the last few years with teams in the UK and Germany. 

Now we learn that the automaker is also building a small research and development office in Athens, Greece to develop new electric motor technologies.

Several reports came out of Greece over the last few weeks about rumors of Tesla establishing a local presence in the country. 

The nature of the company’s presence was never clear since Greece is a market that Tesla has yet to officially enter. electrek reached out to the company for a comment on the situation and a spokesperson confirmed that Tesla is establishing a local research and development office:     

Tesla is building a small research and development office in Athens, which will be comprised of a highly-qualified engineering team. This team will focus solely on limited research and development activities to accelerate electric motor technology development through close collaboration with our team in the US.”

Three of Tesla’s top electric motor designers, Principal Motor Designer Konstantinos Laskaris, Motor Design Engineer Konstantinos Bourchas, and Staff Motor Design Engineer Vasilis Papanikolaou, all came out of the National Technical University of Athens.  

The company wants to tap even more into this local electrical engineering talent with an office in the Greek capital. 

The Tesla spokesperson added:     

“Greece has strong electric motor engineering talent and technical universities, offering tailored programs and specialized skills for electric motor technology.”  

The team will be relatively small – starting with just 10 engineers – and the local subsidiary, Tesla Greece, will be based at the Lefkippos technological park, on the grounds of the Demokritos National Center for Scientific Research in Athens.

Demokritos issued a statement on Monday welcoming Tesla to its installations, expressing “particular satisfaction that a global innovation giant has chosen Demokritos as a base for one of its top research departments, that designing electric engines. We are very happy to receive all the talented Greek engineers who will return to work beside us.”

Demokritos added that “in the last few months our cooperation for the preparation of the venture with Tesla engineers Konstantinos Laskaris and Konstantinos Bourchas has been exceptionally constructive and above all efficient.” 

Sources: electrek (with edits), Kathimerini

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