Filling the research gaps to drive innovation forward

The Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC) has today released a series of documents designed to support the UK’s position as world-leading in automotive research and development (R&D).

The six ‘Industry Challenges’ reports are designed to support academics, industry and government determine where to focus their R&D activity by presenting the technical barriers to commercialising low-carbon automotive technology in the short, medium and long term.  

Put together following insight from over 130 organisations, including vehicle manufacturers, technology developers and engineering consultancies, the reports identify the most significant technology themes and provide examples of the research opportunities that could springboard innovation. 

Speaking about the report APC Stakeholder Engagement Director, Philippa Oldham, said: 

Automotive innovation is moving at pace, and there is so much to go after, it can often be hard to know where best to focus efforts. Our product and technology roadmaps give a robust forecast of where industry and technology is moving over the next 10 to 15 years. These reports add to that, by identifying what the technology challenges might be within that timeframe and gives examples of the industrial and academic research that might get us to market-readiness faster.

The documents cover Electrical Energy Storage, Electric Machines, Power Electronics, Thermal Propulsion System, Lightweight Vehicles and Powertrain Structures and Fuel Cell technology. The research examples featured in the documents are not fully comprehensive lists, but based on the insight gathered, that give a flavour of the understanding that would benefit the automotive industry.  

They were put together with the support of APC’s Spoke Community a national network that brings together specialist academic, technological and commercial expertise to share best practice for the development of low emission propulsion technologies. Each Spoke is hosted by a leading UK university, globally-recognised in its field, with several named in the top 100 universities in the world.