Fleets to take part in government-backed emissions-busting connected vehicle project
Fleets from the public and commercial sectors are to be
recruited to take part in a 1,000-vehicle trial to “test and fine tune” a
connected vehicle project led by Tantalum, which has secured UK government
The government this week announced a further £109.7 million
of funding to support driverless and low
carbon projects across the UK¸ alongside significant funding from industry.
will share grants from the latest round of funding from the Advanced Propulsion
Centre (APC), the joint industry-government programme to put the UK at the
forefront of low carbon vehicle technology.
The projects, led
by BMW, CNH Industrial, Ford Motor Company, Jaguar Land Rover, Penso
Consulting, Westfield Sportscars and Williams Advanced Engineering, cover a
wide range of new innovations which will help the UK to continue to build on
its excellence and become a global leader in low-emissions technology, and
safeguard 2,370 jobs in the UK according to the government.
A further seven
projects won funding from the government’s Office for Low Emissions Vehicles
(OLEV) to advance the development of a range of ultra-low and zero emissions
vehicle technologies in the UK. Those projects will be led by Equipmake, Ford
Motor Company, Great British Sports Cars, Jaguar Land Rover, Ricardo Innovations,
Romax Technology and Wrightbus.
also announced the first set of winners of the second round of its connected
autonomous vehicles competition, CAV2, with projects set to receive a share of
up to £31 million, match funded by industry. Twenty-four projects demonstrated “clear
commercial value” and identified technical solutions for CAV technology,
including how those vehicles would work within the UK transport system. Further
successful projects from the competition round will be announced soon by Innovate
UK, the government’s innovation agency.
The Tantalum project, which also involves Imperial College,
London, is one of the CAV2 winners and received a £1 million grant to develop
real-time NOx emissions
estimation capability giving local authorities the ability to implement dynamic
road charging based on actual vehicle emissions in a smarter, cheaper and
Ozgur Tohumcu, Tantalum’s CEO,
said: “It is our belief that companies, local authorities and citizens all want
to help clean up the air we breathe. Through Tantalum’s solution and unique
patents, we are within reach of this goal.
“Imagine your vehicle giving
you routes that avoid sensitive areas such as schools while rewarding you
financially for driving in a manner that saves fuel and reduces emissions. Your
vehicle then automatically pays specific emissions charges based on where, when
and how you drive.
“We are working with Imperial
College and cities around the world to make this vision a reality.”
Once developed Tantalum says its Air.Car services will be able to help deliver
the emissions reductions required in urban areas in a smarter, cheaper and
fairer way than some of the blunter instruments being proposed by the
government and local authorities.
When completed, Tantalum says its system will help to reduce
saving drivers fuel and maintenance costs while hugely reducing the
environmental impact of their vehicles. It will also be able to
give fleet managers and consumers detailed understanding of the environmental
impact, the tools to minimise it, while reducing fuel, maintenance and
insurance costs. Better driving style will also improve road safety.
Tantalum says its real-time CO2 emissions product has already helped
customers save an average of 15% in fuel costs through better driving and that
could also reduce NOx emissions
by up to 50%.
Tantalum’s solution can be connected to any vehicle’s
on-board computer. Combining the emissions data streams with the vehicle’s
location and driver behaviour will inform drivers and public authorities of the
real environmental impact of individual vehicles.
The solution, says the company, will deliver the ability to
enforce a genuinely dynamic road charging scheme based on actual vehicle
emissions: fairer and cheaper than the blunt instruments currently being
proposed, which rely on blanket camera coverage and do not motivate better
A major part of the Air.Car project is the vehicle trial starting
in autumn, to test and fine tune the solution. The trial will run within London
and other UK cities where Clean Air Zones are to be established.
Energy Secretary Greg Clark said: “Low carbon and driverless cars are the
future and as a government we are determined through the Industrial Strategy to
build on our strengths and put the UK at the forefront of this revolution.
Investment in this technology is an integral part of this government’s efforts,
to ensure the UK auto sector remains competitive and world-leading.”
John Hayes said: “I am absolutely committed to improving air quality and
reducing pollution in towns and cities, which is essential for people’s health
and the environment.
is investing £109 million to support British businesses in developing
innovative, important technologies which will greatly reduce our emissions
footprint. The number of ultra-low emission vehicles on our roads is at record
levels and our renewed support for these exciting technologies is yet another
also confirmed that Plug-In vehicle Grants of up to £4,500 off the cost of an ultra-low
emission car, up to £2,500 off a hybrid and £500 towards the installation of a
charge point in homes would continue.