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UK Government and industry invest in propulsion technology

Innovative low carbon programmes aim to save over 3 million tonnes of CO2

The Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC) has awarded GBP35 million to three UK-based low carbon automotive powertrain projects, potentially creating or safeguarding nearly 1,800 UK jobs.

The APC is a joint venture between the UK government and the automotive industry. The propulsion technologies developed will support aspirations for the UK to be a world leader in zero emissions technology as part of the Industrial Strategy and recently-published Road to Zero strategy.

With a total value of more than GBP70 million, including both government and industry investment, the projects are expected to enhance the UK’s supply chain and competitiveness in the development of ultra-low emission vehicles as well as upskilling UK workers.

The project consortia are made up of some of the most-recognised names, including: hofer powertrain, Aston Martin, Ceres Power, Nissan, Artemis Intelligent Power and Danfross and Robbie Fluid, covering a broad range of industries.

In Greater London, non-mobile machinery contributes 10% of all NOx emissions and 11% of all PM10 emissions. Artemis Intelligent Power’s project aims to introduce a disruptive technology to the off-highway vehicle sector, which will re-invent hydraulic power for the digital age. It has the potential to reduce fuel consumption and CO2 emissions of some off-highway vehicles by more than 50% when fully developed and will help anchor future R&D and manufacturing capability in Scotland.

The second project will be led by Ceres Power, with the support of Nissan, to develop a compact, high power density, solid oxide fuel cell specifically designed to extend the range of electric light commercial vehicles. This programme addresses commercial vehicles, one of the most challenging to decarbonise aspects of the transport system, and will demonstrate the scalability of the technology to other automotive segments.

The third low carbon project is run by hofer powertrain along with Aston Martin. The consortium is developing a new generation of technically-advanced e-axle transmissions, e-motor and inverter modules, which will be manufactured in the UK, for future high-performance vehicles. The project is expected to build the UK’s e-mobility skills base and improve productivity.

APC chief executive Ian Constance said: “The challenge of lowering emissions is shared by the entire automotive industry, and includes all areas of the sector. This latest round of APC funding highlights the broad range of vehicle types that will benefit from developments in low carbon innovation, with successful applicants developing technologies for commercial and off-highway vehicles, as well as the wider e-mobility industry. We expect that this approach will help to create and safeguard jobs across the UK automotive sector.”

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