The University of Bath has appointed AVL to supply equipment for its new £70 million automotive propulsion research facility – the Institute for Advanced Automotive Propulsion Systems (IAAPS).

This equipment contract will bring together the University of Bath and the Austrian-based company to provide the latest state-of-the-art research facilities designed for the future, enabling deep insights into the complex nature of transitioning to future Ultra Low and Zero Emission Vehicles.

This will include more and full electrification propulsion, hybrid configurations, energy storage and battery management as well as next generation fuels and high efficiency combustion engines.

The equipment will allow current research areas to be strengthened and new areas to be opened with a specific focus on whole vehicle assessments, specifically under real-world driving conditions.

Professor 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 (SMEs) 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.”

IAAPS will be a global centre of excellence, delivering transformational research and innovation and supporting the automotive industries in meeting future air quality standards. Located at the Bristol and Bath Science Park in the South West of England it is scheduled to open in late 2020.

Expert teams at Bath and AVL will enter into a unique partnership which aims to advance knowledge in integrated simulation environments.

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 centre 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, IAAPS Programme Director, 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.”

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 (IODP) which aims at 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 the new equipment will begin in January 2020, with a number of test facilities operational from November 2020.