Mobility and Transportation – Automotive Technology

Economical, quiet, environmentally friendly, safe and comfortable – this is how automotive travel should be in the future. Fraunhofer scientists are researching ways to make this a reality, for instance by looking into sustainable drive concepts and intelligent lightweight technologies as a way to decrease fuel consumption. Finding ways to improve resource and energy efficiency also plays an important role in new vehicle production technologies.

Mobilität und Transport


Crash test under X-ray

For the first time, the internal structures of a vehicle are rendered visible during crash thanks to the newly installed technology for X-ray car crash (X-CC) at the Crash Center of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft.

New automotive lighting revolutionizes road safety

A German research alliance with well-known members from industry and research has developed the basis for smart, high resolution LED headlights, which takes adaptive forward lighting to a new dimension. The light can be adapted to take account of every conceivable bend in the road so that there are no dark peripheral areas.This allows the driver to see these vehicles more clearly. At the same time, the beam of light does not shine on the heads of oncoming drivers, which means they’re not dazzled. As a result, such shifting headlights no longer have to be dimmed on country roads.

Electromobility – Driving Electric

Wheel hub motors make it possible to cut costs and energy consumption in electric vehicles by eleminating components oft he classic mechanical drive line.
© Thomas Ernsting

Wheel hub motors make it possible to cut costs and energy consumption in electric vehicles by eleminating components oft he classic mechanical drive line.

Electromobility is one of the keys to achieving sustainable mobility for the future. The first electric vehicles have been available on the market for years now. But high purchase prices and short ranges still keep many drivers from deciding in favor of an electric-powered vehicle. Fraunhofer researchers are currently working together with industry on new solutions for innovative batteries, cable-free charging and cost-efficient drive systems. These components are to help improve the performance of future generations of the electric automobile.

SaLsA - Safe Autonomous Logistics and Transportation Vehicles in Outdoor Areas

Until now, automated guided vehicles (AGVs) have been used only to automate material transportation within production halls, and have moved no faster than walking pace for safety reasons. The SaLsA project develops autonomous AGVs that for the first time are able to operate beyond the confines of production and storage facilities. These new vehicles are designed to keep pace with and work safely alongside employees and conventional forklifts and trucks.

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Crashtest Facility Highly Efficient Inductive Charging System For Electric Vehicles

Induktives Ladesystem
© Fraunhofer ISE

Scientists at the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE in Freiburg have developed a highly efficient system for inductively charging electric vehicles. The contactless solution transfers energy to the vehicle’s battery via a magnetic field formed between two coils.

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Center of Excellence for Automotive Production

Increasing automotive efficiency is not just about reducing fuel consumption: it’s also about cutting back on energy and raw materials before cars even hit the road. At the Center of Excellence for Automotive Production in Chemnitz, scientists and engineers from the Fraunhofer Institute for Machine Tools and Forming Technology IWU are working with VW to develop solutions for tomorrow’s automotive production. The aim is to apply the findings to industrial series production as soon as the project is completed.

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Fraunhofer Crash-Test Facility in Efringen-Kirchen

Are modern, lightweight vehicles safe? What happens in a crash involving an electric car? These are the sorts of questions researchers are investigating – along with many others – at the new, versatile crash-test facility in Efringen-Kirchen, Baden-Württemberg.

Video: Diamond-like coatings save fuel

Coating engine components with hard carbon reduces friction to almost zero – a development that could save billions of liters of fuel worldwide every year. Now researchers have developed a new laser method to apply the coating on the production line.

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