Mobility and energy, while distinct, offer many synergistic points for research: extensive data gathering, AI techniques, transportation optimization from an environmental point of view are excellent examples where energy and mobility represent a common effect area for technology and solutions made in LINKS.
Energy production and consumption still depend strongly on fossil fuels, with direct effects on the environment and climate. Improved usage of renewable sources and more efficient conversion projects play an important role in the energetic transition progress. Energy Intelligence technology in management, control and rationalisation of energy consumption is a fundamental driver towards a more sustainable future.
For this reason LINKS Foundation has always prioritised researching the adoption of the Internet of Things paradigm and artificial intelligence technology applied to the world of energy sustainability in production processes, in building energy efficiency and in the evolution of electrical networks in smart networks.
Mobility too is a crucial component in answering the challenges of energy efficiency and climate change through better usage of existing resources, electrification or alternative fuel usage and the adoption of circular economy paradigms applied to infrastructures and transportation.
Transportation itself is living through a period of great revolution thanks to the maturity some frontier technology that is pervasively spreading is reaching. This technology needs governing to maximize the benefits it can provide to the community, such as connected and autonomous mobility or urban air mobility (UAM), adaptive, on demand and shared transportation services, the passage from property to service, enabled by MaaS platforms, Big Data and artificial intelligence for the analysis and prediction of the mobility demand, the blockchain to enable smart contracts, such as peer-to-peer sharing mobility.
The most likely vision is that of a heterogeneous mobility scenario, strongly interconnected, correlated with energy production and consumption aspects where the integration with electrical networks and other smart systems is necessary for its optimisation.
In this scenario data and decisions take on a different worth. The effect area can still concern energy saving and single-vehicle emissions, but more aspects rise to prominence such as safe driving, advanced mechanisms of autonomous and connected driving included, the protection of the so-called vulnerable users (cyclists and pedestrians), smart management of multi-modal traffic and the role of street infrastructure and stakeholders (local too) for automated driving.
The technical-scientific domains overseen by LINKS Foundation become essential building blocks to manage such emerging complexity. Digital twins integrated with simulation environments and decision support systems can enable management, efficiency and optimisation of the resulting ecosystem.