The Rise of Electric Vehicles

Around the world, policies are in place that will eliminate the sale or use of traditional conventionally-powered cars and trucks over the coming decades. Automakers must prepare to pursue alternatives now. Electric vehicles are widely seen as the most promising alternative to internal combustion engines, but their growth has been held back by certain technological barriers. Improvements in battery technology, including breakthroughs allowing for increases in total capacity and reductions in charging times will make electric vehicles more practical and reduce potential customers’ anxiety over the vehicle’s range. New alternative powertrain technologies will also improve the efficiency of vehicles, further extending their range and providing the horsepower necessary to replace more powerful vehicles.


New Opportunities Involving Vehicle Connectivity

5G technology will create new opportunities to develop and deploy a variety of connected services in vehicles, which will allow passengers to either work more productively while the vehicle drives itself to a selected destination, or to access entertainment resources over the vehicle’s network connection. Additionally, 5G and other communication technologies are expected to power a new class of interactions often referred to as vehicle-to-X connectivity. Such communication may include vehicle-to-vehicle communication that improves the safety of multiple autonomous vehicles by allowing them to better coordinate their motion when in close proximity to one another. In the future, vehicle connectivity will enable communication between vehicles and traffic control systems, which would allow autonomous vehicles to flow smoothly past one another at intersections, potentially even eliminating the need for traffic lights.


The Technologies that Will Enable Full Vehicle Autonomy

Automakers and OEMs are leveraging a variety of innovative technologies in their journey towards a fully-autonomous driving system for road vehicles. Advances in computer vision, associated sensors (such as high-resolution cameras and LiDAR), and data processing techniques developed in fields such as machine learning within real-time Internet-of-things frameworks are all contributing to efforts to enable higher levels of autonomous control.

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Improving “Last-Mile” Delivery with Autonomous Vehicles

“Last-mile” delivery operations are recognised as a significant contributor to both traffic congestion and air pollution in major cities. However, new technologies may provide better systems for the “last-mile” delivery of packages. Land-based autonomous delivery systems involve using autonomous robotic systems to deliver packages. Relying on electricity rather than internal combustion engines, and only needing to have space for the packages, rather than for the driver as well, these robotic systems would efficiently navigate the streets and reduce the emissions impact of “last-mile” deliveries. Electric drone-based delivery systems for smaller packages may also form part of the solution, and completely avoid contributing to road congestion problems.


Machine Learning & Big Data to Optimise Fleet Management Operations

The management of large fleets of vehicles, as is common in logistics organisation, may also be improved through advances in vehicle connectivity that will be enabled by 5G. With constant connections to all of the vehicles in their fleet, logistics organisations will be able to better monitor and optimise the use of their resources. Additionally, when combined with a range of on-vehicle sensors, fleet managers will be able to gain real-time data on to monitor assets such as condition of their vehicles and how it affects the overall fleet. When filtered using machine learning techniques, the continuous monitoring of the streams of data from on-vehicle sensors, coupled with analysis of large volumes of previously collected data stored in the cloud, may allow fleet managers to optimise fleet operations requiring the least cost and identify potential maintenance issues on specific vehicles at the first sign of trouble.

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infrastructure services

Digital Twins in the Design and Operation of Major Infrastructure

Both the designers and eventual operators of large-scale infrastructure projects face challenges in managing the complexity of their installations. However, new technologies, particularly the development of digital twins, are enabling more effective planning and efficient use of major infrastructure installations to reduce costs but also identify any costly risks during installation In the design stage, a digital twin can help architects and engineers experiment with simulated design changes and evaluate their implications during both construction and operation of the infrastructure project. As the digital twin serves as not just a visual representation, but also as a functional simulation of the proposed project’s design, it can be used to explore how changes to the design might enhance or interfere with an infrastructure’s most important functional characteristics. Once in operation, digital twins supplied with data from sensors embedded in the completed structure can also be used by facility operators to more accurately simulate the effects of proposed modifications to the infrastructure, and can monitor the infrastructure for potential maintenance issues.

Virtual and Augmented Reality’s Role in the Design, Construction, and Operation of Major Infrastructure

Virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) are creating new opportunities for companies involved in the design and operation of complex infrastructure projects. At the design stage, VR allows architects and engineers to explore a realistic virtual representation of the proposed structure, enabling stakeholders to conduct a much more detailed evaluation of the implications of proposals for specific design elements before construction begins. Once under construction, AR-based headsets can provide workers and managers with the unique capability to view the completed segments of the infrastructure project in the real-world merged seamlessly with virtual representations of the remaining, unconstructed segments overlaid on their view by the headset’s special lenses. Once the project is completed, both VR and AR can be useful to the facility’s operations and maintenance personnel. For example, VR would be a useful training aid to instruct new employees on how to perform their work safely around potentially dangerous areas of the infrastructure. By contrast, AR could allow maintenance employees to simultaneously evaluate the infrastructure and equipment in the real-world while also viewing relevant information relating to its operation and maintenance overlaid on their view in real time.

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featured CASE STUDY

Mobility: Infrastructure Services

Expanding portfolio into new innovative infrastructure and transportation services

We recently supported a multinational infrastructure and transportation services company. We identified innovative solutions to respond to new market demands and improve the management of toll roads & highways, future modes of mobility, at airports, and in construction services. These novel solutions will enable them capture a bigger share of the more than $18 trillion worth of transportation infrastructure development opportunities that are predicted to be available through 2030...

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FEATURED grand challenge

maintaining future Sustainability from disruptive future Mobility sector

Within the next two decades, petrol and diesel-powered automobiles are likely to be phased out in many parts of the world. The United Kingdom, Sweden, and China, have all proposed legislation that would ban the sale of new petrol and diesel cars. Automobile manufacturers must act now to avoid being left behind when these new laws come into effect. This transition away from fossil fuel-powered automobiles will also impact corporations throughout the value chain. These companies must find a way to be part of the future mobility landscape by developing or identifying alternative products to add to their portfolios. If they do not, they risk losing a significant share of their revenue.

Companies must plan to respond to the changes occurring in the transportation sector, otherwise they may suffer losses to competitors who have already invested in relevant innovations. In particular, companies need to develop the infrastructure necessary to support the simultaneous charging of large numbers of electric vehicles, invest into new driverless technologies, and while also monitoring the cybersecurity threats that will arise from greater levels of interconnectivity.

LATEST Publication



Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS)—first developed in the 1990s, and introduced in vehicles the 2000s—have helped to reduce the number of road accidents, but ADAS cannot fully address this problem, as over 90% of all car accidents result from human mistakes. Innovations in sensors and computing power have led automobile manufacturers to pursue full vehicle automation, and many are now considering introducing this technology to the mass-market in the near future. Is the transfer of control from humans to their autonomous vehicles just around the corner? Self-driving cars will need to be ruled to be safe...

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