University of Bath appoints AVL to equip propulsions test facility

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The University of Bath has selected AVL to supply equipment for its new £70m (US$90.3m) automotive propulsion research facility.

The Institute for Advanced Automotive Propulsion Systems (IAAPS) will be a hub for developing hybrid and electric vehicle technologies, energy storage solutions, and battery management systems, as well as next-generation fuels and high-efficiency combustion engines.

Located at the Bristol and Bath Science Park in the Southwest of England, the facility is scheduled to open in late 2020. The equipment will strengthen current research capabilities and open up new analysis areas with a focus on whole vehicle assessment.

Prof. Gary Hawley, Dean of the Faculty of Engineering & Design at the University of Bath, commented, “Through the IAAPS open access model, academics, automotive industry partners and small- and medium-sized enterprises will be able to work on challenging research with access to world-class research infrastructure and people. This will promote greater collaboration and the sharing of expertise to advance knowledge.”

Rob Oliver, IAAPS chief engineer, said, “I’m delighted that we will be partnering with AVL on the installation of the high-spec testing facilities that will make IAAPS stand out as a center of excellence for research across all propulsion system types. AVL’s reputation as a leader in the development, simulation and testing of powertrain systems aligns perfectly with Bath’s expertise in delivering automotive propulsion research with impact.”

Gavin Edwards, program director of IAAPS, commented, “IAAPS, and our new collaboration with AVL, will significantly expand our capacity to devise innovative solutions that address key real-world challenges such as engine downsizing, more cost-effective electric motors, better simulation tools, improved fuel consumption and lower vehicle emissions. This collaboration will act as a significant milestone in the future success of IAAPS.”

The unique partnership between AVL and the University of Bath aims to advance knowledge in integrated simulation environments, too.

Wolfgang Puntigam, global business unit manager of integrated open development platform at AVL, added, “IAAPS represents a very advanced hub to jointly develop our Integrated and Open Development Platform, which enables faster, better and more affordable development processes.”

Over the next 12 months, Bath and AVL will be working closely with the IAAPS design team and main contractor to align the technical requirements for the new facility with the capital build. Installation of new equipment will begin in January 2020, with a number of test facilities operational from November 2020.

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Rachel's career in journalism began around five years ago when she started working for UKi Media & Events, having recently graduated from Coventry University where she studied the subject. Her favourite aspect of the job is interviewing industry experts, including researchers, scientists, engineers and technicians, and learning more about the groundbreaking technologies and innovations that are shaping the future of the automotive and tire industries.

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