Space technology solutions for urban transport

Space technology is increasingly being used to provide solutions to problems faced by all sorts of industries. 

As part of the drive to raise awareness of what space technology can do to help overcome challenges in the urban transport sector, EMBRACE (the East Midlands Business Research satellite Applications Centre of Excellence), one of the Satellite Applications Catapult’s Centres of Excellence, is hosting a conference at the Motor Industry Research Agency (MIRA) near Nuneaton, on Tuesday 24 March.

Professor Paul Monks of the University's Department of Chemistry is the lead partner of EMBRACE and a long-time advocate of space technology - he will be presenting at the event.

He said: “People use satellite technology every day as part of their daily activities, such as Satnavs, probably without thinking. Satellites and their services have the ability to drive the next generation of transport services from rail signalling to autonomous vehicles. I am excited to hear from industry about their needs that can be met by a new generation of satellite data.”

Speakers from the transport sector have been invited to give a brief overview of the challenges they face. In response, academics from the Universities of Leicester, Nottingham and the British Geological Survey, along with local companies with specific expertise in the field, have been invited to present potential solutions. 

The aim of the conference is to bring together organisations with a mutual interest in improving urban transport so that they might generate projects which will result in products and services that can be exploited commercially.

To help the process along, experts from Innovate UK, Horizon 2020 and other funding bodies will be providing advice on how to secure funding to support these projects.

The event brings together representatives from both the Satellite Applications and the Transport Systems Catapults who can provide support for such projects. There is clearly a great deal of common ground between these two areas of expertise and it is hoped this can be exploited in the drive to create hi-tech growth for the UK economy. 

Space technology is seen as a facilitator for the development of many aspects of hi-tech industries and it is the intention that EMBRACE will invite the other Catapults, such as the Future Cities, Offshore Renewable Energy and the Digital Economy, to participate in future conferences of this type with a view to accelerating the exploitation of the UK knowledge base for economic growth.

For further information on the Urban Transport event see here.