Part 1: COMVEC 2023 – A Gateway to New Opportunities

What is COMVEC?

COMVEC refers to the Commercial Vehicle Engineering Congress organized by Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) International. SAE International is a global association of engineers and technical experts in the aerospace, automotive, and commercial vehicle industries.

COMVEC has become a gathering place for commercial vehicle professionals across industry sectors. OEMs, suppliers, government professionals and academia come to work together, share the latest innovations and technologies in on and off-highway vehicles, and prepare for the future. COMVEC 2023 was held in Schaumburg, Illinois, from September 19–21. The focus of this conference was: Reliability, Sustainability, Energy Efficiency.


Participation in events like COMVEC is not just about listening to expert speakers or discovering the latest trends. It’s about making connections, exploring opportunities, broadening horizons and, of course, putting your company in the limelight. As a panelist at COMVEC 2023, I had the privilege to experience this firsthand. My panel discussion was focused on Model/Software/Hardware in the Loop (MIL/SIL/HIL) test strategies. The DISTek sales team also represented DISTek in the booth display. 

Being a panelist isn’t the same as being an attendee. When you’re up there, sharing insights and experiences, it places you and your company among the top leaders in the industry. This automatically establishes credibility and assists with brand awareness.

The Panel

  • Daniella Seekatz – Cummins Inc.
    • Test Technology Solutions and Hardware Verification and Validation Sr Manager. 11+ years in controls automotive verification and validation with MIL/SIL/HIL.
  • Jace Allen – dSPACE
    • Technical Evangelist. Former Director at dSPACE Inc., Realtime Simulation Expert.
  • Mark Sahlin – Vermeer Corporation
    • Principal Engineer, Model Based Systems Engineering. Former MBSD Champion and Technical Leader at John Deere.
  • Paul Bromnick – AVL
    • Supervisor for the Advanced Methodology, Development and Calibration team at AVL in Michigan.
  • Nishantha Randunu – DISTek Integration, Inc.
    • Senior Simulation, Modeling and Software Engineer.


The best part about our panel, for me, was that, even before the event, the panel met several times, brainstorming and sketching out the primary areas of discussion. Everyone from the panel shared the top 5 questions and topics they wanted to start the conversation with. This helped to spread out our panel discussion in different areas. Later, we grouped and prioritized those ideas.

Areas of discussion

These were the main areas of discussions we covered in the panel:

  • How to enable systems thinking and systems engineering.
  • Processes – Determining what to test and how to test? How to start?
  • Limitations and best practices.
  • Preparing for new technologies and architecture.

So now that we’ve made it through the all-important preparation phase, stay tuned for part 2 where I discuss the actual panel discussion portion and the networking opportunities that I experienced first-hand!