EU projects – Technology Scouting – Business Innovation

AUTONOMOUS VEHICLES: the transport of the future


Autonomous or self-driving vehicles are the next generation of vehicles aimed at providing cleaner and safer mode of transport and revolutionize the way we experience travel. Thus, this topic has gained much traction amongst car manufacturers and in the automotive industry.
In terms of innovation, research is focused towards creating guidelines for cross-cultural road upgrading and passengers and road users’ safety, development of algorithms, simulations, models as well as Cooperative Intelligent Transport Systems, navigation satellite systems, state of the art sensors and communication networks. Furthermore, some projects seek to leverage the applications of Big Data, cloud computing and the Internet of Things technologies to advance autonomous vehicles. These innovations should facilitate the seamless integration of machine-human interactions (in case of semi-automation), infrastructure design aimed at uninterrupted and efficient traffic flow as well as safe interactions between conventional and automated models considering shared infrastructure.
The below network shows the network of key players in the autonomous vehicles field within H2020 whereby the clusters represent the various projects. The largest cluster corresponds to the SCOTT project with 52 partners including Brazil and a funding of 39 million Euros. The SCOTT is geared towards the provision of wireless sensor & actuator networks and communication in mobility and smart infrastructure.

There are currently about 15 projects related to autonomous vehicles and the cumulative amount of funding invested in projects related to autonomous vehicles is well over 65 million euros with well over 70% invested in projects that commenced in 2017. Private companies pioneering the autonomous/unmanned vehicles research in the H2020 include Tomtom Development Gmbh, Dynniq Nederland Bv, Tass International Mobility Center Bv, ERTICO-ITS Europe, Hyundai Motor Europe Technical Center Gmbh. Among the research centers and universities, the leaders in autonomous vehicles include Fraunhofer, CEA, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Centro Ricerche Fiat (Italy), VTI (Sweden), VeDecoM (France), Institute of Communication and Computer Systems (National Technical University of Athens), Centre for Research and Technology-Hellas (Greece).