NEWS18 September 2023

UKRI and UK government launch transport research hub

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UK – UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) and the Department for Transport have helped fund a research hub to help upgrade and decarbonise the UK’s transport infrastructure.

Speeding train at night

The Research Hub for Decarbonised Adaptable and Resilient Transport Infrastructures (DARe) will identify ways to make a net zero transport sector, which is the largest contributor to the UK’s domestic greenhouse gas emissions.

DARe will also look at how to make national, regional and local transport infrastructure meet the challenges of climate change, such as heatwaves and flooding.

Funding of £10 million has been awarded by the Department for Transport National Highways, HS2 Ltd, Network Rail and UKRI.

The hub will be led by Newcastle University, with added input from the universities of Cambridge, Glasgow and Heriot-Watt.

As part of DARe’s work, researchers will also launch an open-source platform, opening the data to policymakers, local authorities and the frontline of transport systems.

Professor Miles Padgett, interim executive chair of the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, part of UKRI, said: “A well-functioning low carbon transport infrastructure is vital to sustain communities and economies.

“This investment in the climate resilient development of our transport system will keep the UK at the forefront of the green industrial revolution and accelerate the transition to a secure and prosperous green economy.”

Professor Phil Blythe, professor of intelligent transport systems and head of the Future Mobility Group at Newcastle University, said: “We are delighted to be awarded the hub, which will be the national focus for research into how we decarbonise and make resilient our transport infrastructure.

“The hub will engage widely to bring together the leading academics from across the UK and their civic and industry partners so we can focus on understanding the underpinning science and engineering to enable us to tackle these real challenges and provide the models that will help us understand the impact and find the most appropriate solutions.”

Transport secretary Mark Harper said: “This hub will be a centre of academic excellence, helping us keep our transport network resilient into the future.”