Focus of the Program
Automotive is a field that fully complements the technological and societal challenges facing the automotive industry. Future developments in the industry will be geared to:
• Smart mobility: how can smart automotive technology help reduce the number of traffic jams?
• Clean vehicles: how can new methods make the car even more fuel-efficient and clean?
TU/e is collaborating with the international business world on intelligent, productive mobility and transport as well as on safe, clean and efficient vehicles.
More specifically the Automotive field concerns the following sub-fields and subjects:
• Thinking in terms of systems. This is central to Automotive. To get the highest level of efficiency from the technology, the design of vehicles requires a full system analysis and optimization of the parts/disciplines that work together in the vehicle. In new cars 50% of the added value comes from microprocessors, electrical, electromechanical and network components. This percentage continues to rise. The challenge to the car industry is to ensure that the integration of sub-systems in the car does not compromise performance, reliability, safety and profitability. This demands a lot of large-scale innovation research.
• In the area of mobility, energy supplies and the environment, automotive research and development can make a valuable (societal) contribution. With the increasing focus on the environmental impact of our mobility, the automotive sector is compelled to make more sustainable cars from an environmental perspective: CO2-neutral or emission-free. European legislation stipulates that CO2 vehicle emissions must be 20% lower within a number of years. For this reason a range of new technologies are being tested, like (plug-in) hybrid and fully electric cars. By using electricity as a flexible and easy-to-regulate energy source, the efficiency of driving can be significantly improved, emissions reduced and government requirements observed.
• Vehicle communication. This is becoming more and more important. A car or truck of the future can be regarded as a computer on wheels that shares data with the (logistics) infrastructure, with other vehicles and with their drivers through all kinds of communication technologies. The core of intelligent
systems is cooperative mobility in which the traffic is seen as a variable network of vehicles that record and share information, respond to and are influenced by each other. The development of cooperative mobility comprises communication from car to infrastructure (car-to-infra) and from car to car (car-to-car) to boost safety, traffic flow and fuel efficiency.