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Are low carbon vehicles an answer to pollution in cities?

Posted on 13/12/2016

Join KTN's innovation showcase at LCV 2017.

Join KTN's innovation showcase at LCV 2017.

Earlier this month, the mayors of four major cities – Paris, Mexico City, Athens, and Madrid – announced that they would implement a ban on diesel vehicles by 2025, in order to improve urban air quality.  With ongoing concerns about the environmental impact of emissions from petrol-powered cars, is this the beginning of the end for the internal combustion engine?

In recent years, low carbon vehicles (LCVs) have become more commonplace on our roads. The UK is now the largest market in Europe for LCVs, but two factors still weigh heavily when consumers consider these vehicles: cost and range. There is a lot of research going on in this area, and one of the key areas of innovation to address this challenge will be the use of advanced materials.

For electric vehicles (EVs), one of the key challenges is to keep the weight of the vehicle as low as possible as the lighter the vehicle, the longer the range. EVs such as the BMW i3 use a lot of carbon fibre composites to reduce weight. However, this then increases the cost of the vehicle compared to a predominantly aluminium or steel vehicle.

Graphene is presented as the wonder material of tomorrow, but for LCVs, it is showing the potential to quintuple range compared to conventional lithium-ion batteries in the same space.

One of the key dates in the calendar for LCVs in the UK will be LCV 2017, taking place on 6 and 7 September. At this event, the Knowledge Transfer Network is once again planning to host the Advanced Materials Innovation Showcase.

There will be another opportunity for innovative SMEs with advanced materials solutions for the low carbon vehicle market to exhibit alongside their peers.

The Advanced Materials Innovation Showcase aims to raise the awareness of grass roots innovation and potentially game-changing technologies being pioneered by UK-based SMEs and micro-enterprises.

As a participating company, you will have the opportunity to promote yourself to industry leaders — from Tier 1 and design engineers through to vehicle manufacturers.

At this stage, we are collecting expressions of interest. If you would be interested in exhibiting in the Advanced Materials Innovation Showcase at Low Carbon Vehicle 2017, please contact Ajay Kapadia for further details by Monday 16 January 2017.