Meridian has launched as an ‘intelligent mobility accelerator’ between the Advanced Propulsion Centre (APC), in collaboration with the UK government’s centre for connected and autonomous vehicles (CCAV) and the Automotive Council, aimed at fermenting cross industry collaboration around connected and autonomous vehicles (CAV).
In order to do this, it will look to bring together established UK-leading start-ups, OEMs and SMEs from a number of industries – including, artificial intelligence, insurance, legal, telecommunications, gaming, mobility and the financial services sectors – to pitch their CAV innovations and visions in exchange for technical and financial support.
By bringing together partners from different industries, the hope is Meridian will be able to bridge potential gaps in the supply chain, and help improve the UK’s strengths in CAV testing and development.
Jim Campbell has been appointed launch director of the accelerator.
Of the launch, he said: “In order for CAVs to be fully adopted they need to function seamlessly on all roads. Meridian will focus on integrating and connecting these vehicles with complex environments in the UK and around the world. For this to happen we need all industries, and government, to work together on the same technologies and the same standards. For this to happen collaboration is key.”
Climate change and industry minister, Claire Perry, said: “At the heart of our Industrial Strategy is a commitment to delivering world-class science, research and innovation. The Meridian co-ordination hub embodies this ambition, creating a globally recognisable brand that will bring the automotive sector, academia and Government together behind a common set of strategic goals.
“A report we have published predicts that by 2035 the global market for CAV technologies will be worth £907 billion, and through government investment and collaboration with industry in this area we will ensure that the UK becomes one of the global ‘go to’ destinations for the development of this technology.”
Activities Meridian will look to encourage include creating a ‘Spoke Network’, a community of UK academic institutions to share best practice between academia and industry.