UK Govt grants £30m to support self-driving technologies

The Centre for Connected and Autonomous Vehicles (CCAV) - with Meridian Mobility and Innovate UK – has up to £30m for projects that help make the UK the most effective connected and autonomous vehicle development ecosystem in the world.

CCAV and Meridian Mobility has up to £30m for projects that help make the UK the most effective ecosystem for self-driving technologies – image courtesy of Depositphotos.

Reportedly, businesses and research organisations can apply into 2 competitions that support the testing of connected and autonomous vehicles and progress their development.

Market opportunities

Connected and autonomous vehicles are a rapidly developing technology area. They offer potentially huge economic and social benefits – but in leveraging this the government need to make sure that safety, security and privacy are not compromised.

By funding the infrastructure that supports these vehicles, the government will help industry to develop safe, efficient systems for moving goods and people around.

These competitions are part of Meridian Mobility’s self-driving vehicle development programme, which is designed to support cutting-edge connected and autonomous vehicle development infrastructure in the UK.

In the first competition, there is up to £5m for one project that supports the sharing and trading of data generated by infrastructure, connected or autonomous vehicles or other third parties.

The proposed platform will need to:

  • cope with increasing volumes of data and new data formats
  • be accessible and appropriate for users

Applications for projects should:

  • demonstrate a clear route to commercial viability and sustainable business model
  • demonstrate best practice in data ethics, security and privacy standards compliance, including General Data Protection Regulation
  • demonstrate the use of cutting-edge technology, such as blockchain
  • generate or use real world data
  • represent the target environment in the UK and other appropriate global markets
  • include suitable hardware for the platforms and services that will support connected and autonomous vehicle deployment
  • contribute to a data working group that will inform and influence policy and standards
  • support integration and collaboration across UK’s connected and autonomous vehicle ecosystem
  • where applicable, demonstrate that you have consulted road owner operators

Autonomous highway, rural roads and parking

There is up to £25m in the second competition. This is for up to six projects for facilities to support the testing of connected and autonomous vehicles for highways, rural roads and parking. The government is seeking projects across four themes. The amount you can get will depend on the area you are applying into. These are:

  • controlled test environments that represent highways and the common features of road junctions. The government is looking to fund one facility in this area
  • continuous public test environments, including highways and rural roads, which connect to existing urban test sites. The government will fund one to two environments
  • controlled parking test environments that are realistic and representative of current and future infrastructure for automated parking. The government will fund one facility in this area
  • public parking test environments for autonomous vehicle parking.

Projects must be carried out in a defined geographical area that covers parts of the West Midlands through to the South East. Facilities may be located anywhere in this area including: Coventry, Royal Leamington Spa, Stratford-upon-Avon, Northampton, Milton Keynes, Oxford, Luton, London, Reading, Croydon, Guildford.