As the Manager of Luxinnovation’s Automobilty Cluster, Anthony Auert is in touch with the latest mobility developments. In this exclusive interview, he talks about the cluster’s motivations for 2022, the newest digitalisation trends and some startups worth keeping your eye on.
What goals does the Automobility Cluster have for 2022?
Luxembourg Automobility Cluster‘s main goal is to empower companies to innovate to be ready for the challenges that will arise in the future. To do so, we aim to foster collaborative projects with a strong focus on cross-sectorial collaboration, sustainability and digitalisation.
To carry out our mission, we need in-depth and relevant knowledge about our customers and the ecosystem. This will be achieved notably by the accomplishment of a very detailed sector mapping initiated last year.
How is digitalisation changing the mobility sector?
The mobility sector is undergoing profound transformation due to rapidly progressing digitalisation. Many different digital solutions have already entered the global automotive markets. These range from electronic stabilisation systems (ESP), lane keeping assist systems and adaptive cruise control to software updates over the mobile network and online vehicle configuration and sales, to mention just a few examples of innovations stemming from global automotive industry players.
The concept of shared mobility is, perhaps, even more disruptive, as it radically changes consumers’ attitudes towards owning their own car. Digitalisation has made it easy and efficient to localise, book and pay for shared vehicles or book taxi-like services offered by individuals using their private vehicle. While this creates abundant new business opportunities for innovative fast adapting companies, it is a threat for the traditional, volume-driven automotive industry.
What is the Automobility Cluster doing to make the mobility sector more sustainable?
We foster proven technology transfers that could offer business diversification while lowering environment impact.
Making public transport more accessible with the development of last mile autonomous solutions supported by digital platforms is also supporting the shift towards a more sustainable mobility.
The circular economy is also offering interesting perspectives. A good example is the startup Interlinks-Auto which is developing a digital platform for second-hand spare parts for cars, aimed at making their use accessible to as many people as possible.
In the near future, Interlinks has the ambition to open a repair centre with a true circular economy approach that would either distribute used spare parts to other garages or install them on their behalf.
“It [HPC] helps mobility companies to make predictions built on simulations and modelling of complex patterns […]”
How does Luxembourg’s Automobility Cluster support mobility startups?
By helping them to build robust business plan and get access to funding together with our colleagues from the startup department. Thanks to our very developed network in the Greater Region and Europe, we help startups to connect with potential customers and business partners.
Luxinnovation is supporting the development of New Way Mobility, a young startup providing expertise both in clean travel strategy consulting – for urban as well as non-urban environments – and in the development of mobility solutions.
Our expertise allows New Way Mobility to consider public aid and to work on patenting, conceptualisation and design in Luxembourg. The startup was also able to benefit from support and networking with key market players and potential partners for the manufacture of equipment and the development of Apps, as well as for interesting leads for the recruitment of young talents.
What opportunities does the HPC MeluXina offer the mobility sector?
The HPC has the ability to process data and perform complex calculations at high speed. It helps mobility companies to make predictions built on simulations and modelling of complex patterns, to conduct analyses of large amounts of data, or to develop artificial intelligence solutions aimed to solve the greatest challenges the companies are working on.
About two thirds of its capacity will be available for companies, and a specialised team will provide support with using the HPC in an optimal manner for digital innovation.
What are the benefits of developing the Luxembourg-France-Germany digital cross border test bed?
Extending 215 km across France, Germany and Luxembourg, the cross-border test bed is a perfect example of a pioneering partnership between three neighbouring countries. Connected and automated driving has the potential to revolutionise everyday mobility and create a wide range of new business opportunities.
The cross-border testbed project addresses the complexities of cross border connectivity and allows industry and academia to test innovative technologies in a real-life environment on public roads and assess the impact on mobility and the environment.
Criteria taken into account include tunnels, border crossings, different traffic signs, road works, traffic density, navigation, uninterrupted cellular networks and last but not least road safety.
The test bed is designed to overcome these challenges and to offer developers the facility of applying for a standard certification valid across all three countries. 5G connectivity optimising cross border coverage as well as the collection, storage and processing of huge amounts of data are also important considerations taken into account.
Close coordination between the private and public sectors in all three countries will ensure that learnings are shared and the drive along the international road to success continues.