The Foresight Vehicle Initiative, now administered by The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders Limited (SMMT), is the UK's prime knowledge transfer network for the automotive industry, and is the UK's response to the worldwide crisis in transport.
The Foresight Vehicle Programme, launched in 1995, is a UK government iniative to identify, develop and demonstrate appropriate product and process technologies for road transport for the future.
Foresight Vehicle is a collaboration between industry, academia and Government to identify and demonstrate technologies for sustainable road transport.
The Foresight Vehicle Steering Group was set up by the Transport Panel and the DTI to define the detailed objectives of a programme designed to develop, demonstrate and exploit technology '... to stimulate the UK automotive supplier base to develop products and systems which satisfy increasingly stringent environmental requirements while meeting mass expectations for safety, performance, cost and desirability'.
It consists of representatives of vehicle builders and their suppliers, independent research consultancies and university departments, government departments and user representatives such as motoring organisations.
Future products and technologies must meet social, economic and environmental goals, satisfying market requirements for mobility, safety, performance, cost and desirability, with the objectives of improving the quality of life and wealth creation in the UK.
Research projects are brought forward through 5 Thematic Groups, whose representatives are all expert in their chosen field.
The five Thematic Groups are:
- EPT: Engine Powertrain
- HAEFV: Hybrid, Electric, Alternatively Fuelled Vehicles
- ASSET: Software, Sensors, Electronics and Telematics
- FASMAT: Advanced Structures and Materials
- DMAP: Design and Manufacturing Process
The programme includes Research Networks that are focused on a specific transport issue, technology or sector. They bring together a network of orgranisations with the right expertise and the right sectoral profile. This profile may cover geographical location, industry sector and company size as well as technology. The network members collectively identify the research opportunities, and present proposals to meet the objectives of the Foresight Vehicle Programme.
(Department for Transport involvement in Foresight Vehicle helps balance the policy-driven aspects of the vehicle engineering research programme with opportunities to invest in innovative bluesky type research leading to advanced technologies for the 21st century. In pursing this balanced approach, DfT expects to contribute about £4 million over a five-year period).
Examples of some projects include:
- ACTIVE: Advanced Camera Technology In Visual Ergonomics
- ADAM: Automatic Generation of Design Improvements by Applying Knowledge Based Engineering to the Post-Processing of FE Analysis
- AUTOTAXI: Safety Critical Sensor Integration for Autonomous Vehicles
- BOSCOS: Bone Scanning for Occupant Safety
- CHARGE: Controlled Homogeneous Auto-Ignition Reformed Gas Engine
- DREAM: Design for Reliability for Electronics in Automotive Manufacture
- EASIVT: Electrically Assisted Infinitely Variable Transmission
- FLEXELEC: Large Area Low Cost Flexible Circuits
- HERO: Hybrid-Electric Realised Off Road
- ISOLAB42: Installation and Safety Optimised Lead Acid Battery for 42 Volt Applications
- LIVEMAN: Advanced Joining Processes for Lightweight Vehicle Manufacture
- PITSTOP: Powertrain Integrated Thermal Systems for Thermodynamically Optimised Performance
- RADICAL: Rapid Laminated Die Casting Tooling for the Automotive Industry
- SHORSEN: Short Range Sensors for Automotive Applications
- WHEELS: Wiring Harnesses: Electromagnetic Effects of Lightweight Structures
- ZEFREDO: Zero Failure Rate Electronics Design Opportunities
- Adaptation of Vehicle Environmental Response by Telematics
- Blind Operation of In-Car Controls
- City Hybrid-Electric Bus with Optimised Efficiency Using Information and Guidance Systems for Passenger Convenience and Vehicle Energy Consumption
- Development and Demonstration of a Vehicle Performance and Emission Monitoring System
- Driver Assistance for the Disabled, Elderly and Able Bodied
- Engine/Generator Sets for Hybrid/Electric Vehicles
- Hybrid-Electric Realised Off Road
- Improving Maintenance Scheduling Through Knowledge Based Simulation
- Intelligent Vehicle Motion Control
- Millimetric Transceivers for Transport Applications
- Modelling and Evaluation of Telematics in Freight and Passenger Transport
- Pedestrian Protection Using Shock Absorbing Liquid Technology (C3/P35 )
- Probe Vehicle Information for Traffic Management and Road Network Operations
- Radar-controlled Automatic Lane Following
- Road Origin and Direction Attained by Radar
- The Advanced Protection of Vulnerable Road Users (C2/P56)
- Virtual Vehicle Information Displays (C3/P46)
- Wireless communication to road users for Urban Traffic Management