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$55 million to develop ‘intelligent’ transport systems

9 March 2017
Using smart technology to make travel safer and cheaper

Safer and more productive national transport systems will be developed by a new ‘intelligent’ transport research centre, supported by multiple partners including the University of Sydney’s Australian Centre for Field Robotics.

James Ward, Eduardo Nebot and Stewart Worrall from the Australian Centre for Field Robotics

James Ward, Eduardo Nebot and Stewart Worrall from the Australian Centre for Field Robotics

The iMOVE cooperative research centre (CRC) has received a $55 million grant from the federal government.

iMOVE CRC Bid Chair, Ian Murray said, “As a country, we lose around $16.5 billion a year because of congestion. When you also factor in the human and financial losses due to accidents, we are looking at a phenomenal social and economic cost. We will now have the technology and smarts available to significantly alleviate these problems.

“We are at the verge of a dramatic change in the way transport will be provided in the near future. There are new disruptive technologies such as electrification, autonomous vehicles and drive- sharing that will have a significant impact,” said Professor Eduardo Nebot, Director of the Australian Centre for Field Robotics.

“Our expertise will support the development and deployment of innovative transportation systems and the introduction of autonomous vehicles across a wide variety of industrial and urban applications.

“Among the many benefits to Australia would be the productivity of its freight system from reduced congestion, fuel use and accidents. Car accidents have cost Australia an estimated $17 billion a year and the cost of congestion is projected to be $50 billion by 2030.

“The University of Sydney will work with iMOVE’s partners on the three main research themes of the CRC: intelligent transport systems and infrastructure, end-to-end freight solutions and enhanced personal mobility.

The iMOVE CRC has been in development for over 18 months and is strongly supported by industry, technology innovators, state road authorities, federal and state government departments and industry associations.

The CRC funding and ten-year timeframe will enable the 46 partners to develop technology outcomes that will benefit the whole of Australia. It will deliver new innovative options and experiences for individual travellers, much-needed productivity improvements in logistics and access to new markets for business.

The iMOVE CRC will play a role alongside other national bodies in assisting states, territories and peak industry bodies to collaborate and deliver cohesive national transport outcomes.

“The current explosion of data, the computing power of mobile phones, and the increasing automation of vehicles creates a vast range of opportunities to improve the range, safety, convenience and effectiveness of peoples’ travel options,” said bid lead for iMOVE Ian Christensen.