ADEPT Live Labs SIMULATE programme winners announced

As part of the ADEPT Smart Places Live Labs project, SIMULATE (Smart, Infrastructure & Mobility Urban Laboratory and Test Environment) has announced the ten successful SMEs that have been chosen to enter the SIMULATE programme and receive funding to trial their innovative air quality and mobility solutions in Staffordshire.

The SIMULATE programme, which brings together Staffordshire County Council, Amey, Keele University and the Connected Places Catapult has been looking for game-changing SMEs to come forward and pitch for funding to bring their innovative solutions to life on the local road network since the start of the year.

With over 130 applications received to be part of the programme the SIMULATE judging panel which included representatives from across the project, had the enviable task of whittling the SMEs down to just ten to address the challenges that had been set out.

The winners in both the mobility and air quality challenges, are as follows:

  • ZWINGS is a micro-mobility operator will deploy a mix of 50 e-bikes and e-scooters to facilitate car free movement.
  • Liftango will deliver detailed research into local mobility requirements and formulate a blue print for demand responsive transport across the area.
  • Ginger Town is a UK-based micro-mobility fleet operator with a focus on the use of e-scooter trials and e-bikes.
  • Urban Electric (UE) and MEV are a joint bid comprising of ‘pop up’ electric charging points that integrate back into the pavement when not being used (UE), while MEV will be trialling electric car share alongside the charging points in miniaturised ‘hubs’.
  • FortyTwo in partnership with Oxfordshire County Council will be building a self-regulating, Moss Wall installation to clean the air and act as a carbon basin to combat climate change.
  • Now Wireless will be using artificial intelligence to predict pollution an hour ahead and use that information to change the parameters that can affect it.
  • Fotech will be using fibre cables to detect vibrations from vehicles and to analyse traffic volumes and dynamically change signal junctions to relieve congestion.
  • Biotecture will install an active green wall to act as a barrier against pollution and actively remove air pollutants and deliver a clean air zone.
  • IsCleanAir will deploy their water based, filterless air filtration technology to actively cleanse pollution in areas of poor air quality.

Connected Places Catapult SME Development Director Alex Weedon said: “We are excited to welcome such a diverse group of exciting businesses to the SIMULATE programme,. We had a large number of quality applications which allowed our judges to select a group which really represents the scope and ambition of the thriving SME and start-up community currently working on air quality and mobility in the UK”

Live Labs Programme Director, Giles Perkins, said: “This exciting group of smart mobility and air quality interventions illustrates the breadth of innovation that can now be harnessed in our local communities. We look forward to seeing these being deployed and learnings shared right across the local roads sector for the benefit of all.”

Staffordshire County Council’s cabinet member for highways and transport Helen Fisher, said: “The SIMULATE programme has reached an exciting stage where we now have all of the SMEs on board to start their challenges.

“We’re pleased to be working with our partners in bringing in industry expertise to find and apply innovative sustainable transport and clean air solutions which will bring real long-term benefits to communities and businesses in Staffordshire and across the UK.

“As a council we are committed to work towards greener transport options and combatting climate change and so it’s great that we have this project running in Staffordshire.”

The successful SMEs will now help generate a new vision for sustainable travel and clean air within Staffordshire.  Each SME will be delivering a key element of Staffordshire’s radical new vision of multi-modal mobility hubs.

David Ogden, Business Director at Amey, said: “Seeing the successful list of SMEs that have now joined us on the SIMULATE programme really excites me. Innovation is vital in addressing air quality and mobility challenges that the transportation sector and local communities will face in the coming years.

“Working with innovative SMEs from different business backgrounds enables our sector to learn from the best and implement technologies we might not have usually considered, and exploring the  environmental and mobility benefits to the communities in Staffordshire, through creating a network of multi-modal mobility hubs – developing a new platform for the way innovation is brought to life.”