European transport and space agencies collaborate on satellite communications for smart vehicles

ERTICO, the European public-private collective of road transport agencies and organisations, has signed a provisional deal with the European Space Agency (ESA) to collaborate on space technology and services to improve the safety and reliability of assisted and automated vehicles on European roads. The pair said the deal, a ‘memorandum of intent’, will pave the way to develop and commercialise “digital and green” tech to support an intelligent transportation system (ITS) on the continent.

In a statement, the pair said they will “exchange knowledge and expertise to advance the future of automated and sustainable mobility, improve the reliability of data and build the sector, its services and products stronger and more reliable with space technology. Innovative new services resulting from space-based technology will have a direct benefit to European citizens’ lives”.

ERTICO, which stands for European Road Transport Telematics Implementation Coordination, is a consortium of approximately 120 service providers, industry agencies, public authorities, research institutions, and vehicle manufacturers. It operates various projects, platforms, and support activities with a focus on smart mobility and sustainable transport, with an emphasis on cooperative, connected, and automated mobility (CCAM) and ITS infrastructure for smart cities and roadways, with funding from the European Union.

ESA’s navigation innovation and support programme (NAVISP) aligns with the emphasis on “clean and sustainable mobility,” according to the statement, and investigates ways to provide accurate “positioning, navigation, and timing” (PNT) data for automated vehicles and the future of navigation and traffic management systems. The statement highlighted opportunities to advance “connectivity and geo-positioning through satellite communication.”

“Today’s memorandum represents a big step towards a more efficient, safer and sustainable transport sector in Europe by using space-based applications and services… ERTICO’s comprehensive roadmap defines a future where vehicles communicate with each other, the roads they drive on and other infrastructure – but also highlights the fundamental need for ubiquitous, precise, and reliable positioning, navigation, and timing information – PNT. This is the very focus of ESA’s Navigation Innovation and Support Programme, NAVISP, so the potential for synergy is evident and enormous.”

Nikolaos Tsampieris, senior manager at ERTICO

“There is still much more to do in supporting the transition to safer and more sustainable traffic systems in the future, and today’s new cooperation effort helps make that possible. Because ERTICO bridges so many different actors – service providers, traffic and transport companies, research institutions and universities, public authorities, the connectivity industry, as well as vehicle manufacturers and suppliers – this cooperation opens up a huge number of unique starting points for future research, bringing our work closer to the market and increasing opportunities for commercialisation of space-based applications.”

Rafael Lucas, head of NAVISP at ESA

Source: Enterprise IoT Insights

Scroll to Top