In recent years, we are building more and more roads to relieve traffic congestion achieves nothing more than encouraging more vehicles to use them. Facing with these problems, a number of cities are starting to think about introducing innovative transportation systems and offer to their citizen an sustainable mobility. The basic goal of sustainable mobility is to meet the mobility needs of all people and at the same time reduce congestion, as well as pollution, greenhouse gas emissions and energy consumption. Sustainable mobility is one that is at the same time environmentally friendly, socially just and promotes economic development. With the same effects, the total costs are lower, but the side effects, risks and consumption of natural resources are also lower. Sustainable mobility could also be called more efficient mobility. This benefits everyone, both individuals who lower their costs and increase their quality of life, and the wider community, which also reduces short-term and long-term costs, enabling a higher quality of living without compromising the prospects of future generations.
Transportation is an essential infrastructure for the economic well-being and growth of a country. A healthy transportation sector provides crucial support for economic growth in both rural and urban areas and sustained access to safe, efficient travel for the country’s inhabitants.
Mobility has always been a mix of different industries creating new business innovative models – user-friendly solutions, while transforming cities into smart ecosystems.
Centralized databases, based on 5G and other future / modern network systems. Such systems will form the basis both for the identification, analysis and solution of the problems of the urban transport environment, and as a basis for the construction of AI systems (the basis for autonomous and other systems). Smart city roads built on IoT technologies make it possible for cities to collect and analyze data to improve day-to-day traffic management and adapt for long-term transportation needs. The patterns obtained from the large amounts of traffic data can help improve transportation systems in terms of minimizing traffic congestion by providing alternative routes and reducing the number of accidents by analysing the history of mishaps, including factors such as their cause and the driver speed. A typical smart road will be more animated, able to communicate with vehicles and people using sensors, data capture abilities and the ability to be responsive to changes in the environment. Smart transport data can also provide many benefits, such as reducing the environmental impact and increase safety as well as improving end-to-end user experience, among many others.
Toh Chai K., Sanguesa Julio A., Cano Juan C. and Martinez Francisco J. (2020). Advances in smart roads for future smart cities Proc. R. Soc. A.4762019043920190439
https://royalsocietypublishing.org/doi/10.1098/rspa.2019.0439 (these readings were conducted in September 2021)
It includes many forms of renewable energy sources (electricity, hydrogen, etc.), from the process of development and improvement of vehicle propulsion, to the planning, construction and development of supporting infrastructure, with the aim of a simpler and better transition.
Applies to both personal and public transport vehicles. Autonomous vehicles are coming to us in the near future, with the aim of reducing dependence on car ownership and increasing the level of traffic safety. Few examples of autonomous vehicles are: Self-driving electric buses are the vehicles that can recognize their environment and drive safely with little or no human interference, they use cameras, radars and GPS systems to recognize and communicate with traffic lights and have impressive safety records. These buses of the future will reduce the impact on the environment because they are electric. Autonomous buses have a back-up mode where a human can take control of the vehicle if needed.
World Economic Forum: Europe’s first full-sized self-driving urban electric bus has arrived. https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2021/03/europe-first-autonomous-electric-buses-spain/ (these readings were conducted in September 2021)
The Transit Elevated Bus was a proposed new bus concept where a guided bus straddles above road traffic. It runs on a special track that allows regular vehicles to drive underneath. The Transit Elevated Bus (TEB) system is currently being designed in China and is expected to reduce traffic congestion by 30 percent.
Video: China’s Transit Elevated Bus Debuts at Beijing Intel High Tech Expo (2016 May 22). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LeLAidJl5aw (these readings were conducted in September 2021)
Flying hotel pods. The idea, which comes from Canada-based design firm Hok, is that each room would be a flying glass pod. Driftscape (name is a combination of Hotel and Drone) allows guests to travel while sleeping. Powered by the same technology as drones, each 200-square-foot pod could fit two adults, with space for a queen bed, a bathroom (encased in non-transparent walls), and a desk. Driftscape offers 360-degree views of the outside world and is allowing the guest to travel to locations that are sensitive while preserving the integrity and authenticity of the location.
Inamdar, T.(2021,May 21). Flying Hotel Pods.
Possibility of using drone technologies in passenger transport. Autonomous drone taxis that drive themselves are currently being tested before being released on the market. The drones, which look much like a regular helicopter, have 18 propellers. They can carry two passengers and are expected to be in service soon.
Video: Driverless drone taxi tested flies with two passengers (2021, April 28). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yVCBMxvzHgU (these readings were conducted in September 2021)
Two examples of ultra-high speed transport are Maglev trains and Hyperloop systems. Maglev (short for “magnetic levitation”) is a system of train transportation that uses two sets of magnets: one set to repel and push the train up off the track, and another set to move the elevated train ahead, taking advantage of the lack of friction. Along certain “medium-range” routes (usually 320 to 640 km), maglev can compete favourably with high-speed rail and airplanes. Riders claim the trains are exceptionally comfortable and stable. Maglev trains are already in operation in China and Germany and are expected to become a common mode of transportation throughout the world by 2030.
Boslaugh, S. E. (2020, May 12). Maglev. Encyclopedia Britannica. https://www.britannica.com/technology/maglev-train (these readings were conducted in September 2021)
A Hyperloop is a proposed high-speed mass transportation system for both passenger and freight transport. Hyperloop concept has its roots in a concept invented by George Medhurst in 1799 and has been bring back to public attention by Elon Musk, founder of Tesla Motors and SpaceX. Hyperloop is described as a sealed tube or system of tubes with low air pressure through which a pod may travel substantially free of air resistance or friction. Hyperloops run at an average of 600 mph; their top speed is 760 mph.
Dudnikov, E. E. (2017). Advantages of a new Hyperloop transport technology. Tenth International Conference Management of Large-Scale System Development (MLSD), pp. 1-4, doi: 10.1109/MLSD.2017.8109613. https://ieeexplore.ieee.org/abstract/document/8109613 (these readings were conducted in September 2021)
A platform that offers all transportation services in one place (public and private carriers). In addition to public transport, it also offers complementary systems, such as bike-sharing, car-sharing, rent-a-car, taxi, e-scooter sharing, and other transportation services. The platform allows passengers to plan trips, real-time data, and subscribe to a single ticket to access all services, which significantly affects the choice of travel mode (competition to a personal car).
An example of this can be the evacuation of parking areas from the surface, and the general reduction of parking capacities. Conversion of space to active and sustainable forms of transport, which are complementary to public transport.
Introduction of measures to restrict the entry of vehicles into the city centre (congestion charging), which will result in greater dependence of passengers on public transport.
An example for the environment redesign could be done by using satellite-based air traffic control systems. Satellites provide safe, secure, reliable and resilient connectivity. Air travel is set to become safer, swifter and more environmentally friendly thanks to the introduction of them. GPS technology will be used to increase accuracy and shorten routes. NextGen is expected to save time and fuel, reduce air traffic delays, increase flight capacity and permit air traffic controllers to monitor aircraft with improved safety margins.
Strohmeier, M., Moser, D., Schafer, M., Lenders, V. and Martinovic, I. (September 2019). On the Applicability of Satellite-Based Air Traffic Control Communication for Security, in IEEE Communications Magazine, vol. 57, no. 9, pp. 79-85, doi: 10.1109/MCOM.001.1900037. https://ieeexplore.ieee.org/document/8847232 (these readings were conducted in September 2021)
Here we presented innovations which are an addition to electric vehicles and driverless cars. Electric cars are an excellent solution to the issue of the damage to the environment. The future will bring dramatic technological improvements to the transportation sector, many of which are in unchartered terrain. The government may need to get involved and cooperate more closely with private investors, innovators and other stakeholders as an agent of public interest. Transportation has a rich history of both technical and policy innovation, a history that is likely to persist. Transportation is in an upheaval as it struggles to continue to support the prosperity and quality of life of our nation and others on the planet.
Whatever the future of transportation holds, it is clear that it will continue to play an intrinsic role in human history, making the world a safer and more interconnected place.
Further readings: Goldman, Todd & Gorham, Roger. (2006). Sustainable urban transport: Four innovative directions. Technology in Society. 28. 261-273. 10.1016/j.techsoc.2005.10.007. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/222428850_Sustainable_urban_transport_Four_innovative_directions/citation/download (these readings were conducted in September 2021)
Further Reading: Making the Next-Generation Lithium-Ion Batteries Safer, Longer-Lasting. https://www.asme.org/topics-resources/content/making-nextgeneration-lithiumion-batteries-safer (these readings were conducted in September 2021)