ATLANTA, GA--(Marketwired - Mar 19, 2015) -  DEKRA North America (NA), Inc. today announced that two of its experts -- Markus Egelhaaf and David Kress -- have received the Ralph H. Isbrandt Automotive Safety Engineering Award from the Society of Automobile Engineers (SAE) International, in recognition and appreciation of outstanding contribution to SAE literature which advances the field of automotive safety engineering. Established in 1972, the award annually recognizes the author(s) delivering the most outstanding paper at a Society or section meeting on the subject of automotive safety engineering.

Egelhaaf and Kress recently presented a paper titled, "Fire Fighting of Li-Ion Traction Batteries," which discussed appropriate fire-fighting techniques for full electric and hybrid electric vehicles, which are equipped with lithium-ion batteries. Specifically, the paper presented the results of tests conducted to determine the effect of using three different agents -- water, a surfactant and a gel -- to extinguish a fire involving a vehicle with a lithium-ion traction battery.

"There is much uncertainty about the right techniques when a fire involves a vehicle with a lithium-ion traction battery," said Markus Egelhaaf, Research Expert at DEKRA. "Is water the right extinguishing agent? Is there a risk of explosion? Our research set out to answer these and other questions."

"Our research provides information that will be useful to fire schools and other educational authorities who teach rescue and police personnel," added David Kress, Project Manager, Crash Tests at DEKRA. "The results also will be of interest to vehicle manufacturers regarding the accessibility of the batteries in case of a vehicle fire and to testing facilities."

"As a global leader in automotive safety and quality consulting, DEKRA is focused on helping our major OEM automotive clients ensure the safety of the vehicles they put on the road," said Donald O. Nicholson, President and Chief Regional Officer of DEKRA NA. "With the number of full electric and hybrid electric vehicles rapidly growing, new protocols and procedures need to be developed around these lithium-ion batteries. We congratulate Markus and David on receiving this prestigious safety and engineering award for the important work they are doing."

Markus Egelhaaf is a research expert with 14 years of experience in road safety, vehicle fire safety, forensic science, road transport policy, and accident analysis at the DEKRA Automobil GmbH in Stuttgart, Germany. He is trained as a legal expert for accident reconstruction and as a vehicle fire and arson investigator. He has authored and co-authored several papers, contributes to instructional materials for emergency personnel, and publishes articles in automotive safety and fire science publications. He received the SAE International Lloyd L. Withrow Distinguished Speaker Award during the 2008 SAE World Congress and is a member of the SAE Fire Safety Committee. Egelhaaf received an engineer's degree in safety engineering at the University of Wuppertal in 2001.

David Kress has been a crash tests project manager at the DEKRA Crash Test Center in Stuttgart, Germany since 2010. He specializes in standard and consumer tests with a focus on alternative powered vehicles. He is also trained as a surveyor in homologation testing. He has co-authored several papers and is a member of the Association of German Engineers. Kress received an engineer's degree in vehicle safety engineering at the University of Applied Sciences Dresden in 2010.

The Society of Automobile Engineers (SAE) International is a global association committed to being the ultimate knowledge source for the engineering profession. By uniting more than 137,000 engineers and technical experts, the organization drives knowledge and expertise across a broad spectrum of industries. SAE acts on two priorities: encouraging a lifetime of learning for mobility engineering professionals and setting the standards for industry engineering. 

DEKRA SE is one of the world's leading expert organizations and currently runs activities in more than 50 countries on all five continents. About 35,000 employees are committed to ensuring long-term safety, quality and environmental protection. The DEKRA Business Units "Automotive," "Industrial" and "Personnel" provide professional and innovative services in the fields of vehicle inspection, expertise, claims services, system certification, product testing & certification, industrial & construction inspection, consulting, qualification and temporary work. In 2014, DEKRA generated sales totaling approximately 2.5 billion Euros.

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