Cranfield is to participate in an £11 million autonomous vehicle research programme jointly funded by Jaguar Land Rover and the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) which is aiming to solve some of the technical issues surrounding the introduction of driverless vehicles.

The research, which will take place at 10 UK universities and the Transport Research Laboratory, was announced by Secretary of State for Business, Sajid Javid during a visit to Jaguar Land Rover’s facility at Gaydon in Warwickshire last week.

The research projects are part of a wider government effort to take a leading role in autonomous car development. He said: "This £11 million research and development program and the winning projects are a perfect example of this and will help to keep us at the forefront of the robotics revolution."

As one of five winning projects awarded funding, Cranfield University and University College London are to collaborate on research which explores the co-ordination between human drivers and vehicle controllers.

Automated driving demands a mutual understanding and smooth coordination between human driver and the vehicle controller, to avoid conflict and a mismatch in demands, and to achieve a desirable driving performance.

Using a unique combination of researchers from engineering, cognitive neuroscience and human factors – which studies the human interaction with technology, environments or services – the research will not only contribute to cutting-edge technology innovations in automated driving, but will also result in a major advance in the science of human attention and cognitive control when interacting with automation.

Professor Philip Nelson, EPSRC’s Chief Executive, said: “Science and engineering research is vital to technological innovation and to keeping UK businesses at the forefront of global markets. This joint investment shows how strategic partnerships between the research councils, universities and business can identify industry’s challenges and build the academic expertise needed to meet them. The universities and partners in these projects will take novel approaches to safely change the way we travel in the future.

Notes for editors

The five projects are:
TASCC: Driver-Cognition-Oriented Optimal Control Authority Shifting for Adaptive Automated Driving (CogShift)
Led by Dr Dongpu Cao
Cranfield University, UCL
TASCC: Pervasive low-TeraHz and Video Sensing for Car Autonomy and Driver Assistance (PATH CAD)
Led by Dr Marina Gashinova
University of Birmingham, Heriot-Watt University, University of Edinburgh
TASCC: Human Interaction: Designing Autonomy in Vehicles (HI:DAV)
Led by Professor Neville Stanton
University of Southampton, University of Cambridge
TASCC: Secure Cloud-based Distributed Control (SCDC) Systems for Connected Autonomous Cars
Led by Dr Mehrdad Dianati
University of Surrey, Imperial College London, University of Warwick, Transport Research Laboratory
TASCC: The Cooperative Car
Led by Dr Nathan Griffiths
University of Warwick

About Cranfield University

Cranfield is a specialist postgraduate university that is a global leader for education and transformational research in technology and management.

About Cranfield University

Cranfield is a specialist postgraduate university that is a global leader for education and transformational research in technology and management.

Automotive Doctoral Training Centre

This higher research degree is associated with our Automotive Doctoral Training Centre (DTC). 

A tailored programme of seminars and events alongside the generic core skills training programme, provide those studying a research degree with a wealth of social and networking opportunities with Cranfield’s wider research community.