Competences in nanotechnology are among the core competences in future automobile construction, and they are vital for maintaining competitiveness. The lead innovation NanoMobil is to make nanotechnological effects available for better environmental compatibility, safety and economic efficiency in the automobile area.
Automotive Sector Visions
Nanotechnology is opening up new opportunities in the automobile sector as well.
The focus is on the direct benefits of reduced fuel consumption, improved driving safety and the longevity of products. The car of the future will respond intelligently to stimulants from the environment and to driver behaviour. Screens and mirrors will adapt to external light conditions, tyres will have better traction on the most different road surfaces and numerous sensors will plan ahead to regulate the driving state under changing weather conditions or to prevent crashes. However, aesthetic-functional aspects are equally important. Electronically switchable lacquer colours and possible modification of light-construction concepts provide the possibility of individual vehicle configurations.
Automotive Applications of Nanotechnology
Nanotechnology findings will be used, inter alia, for optimizing the combustion process and exhaust cleaning, as well as for weight reduction of the car body, developing self-healing lacquers, abrasion resistance and traction of the tyres or functional car glazing. Electronics are already contributing above average to the value added chain of automobile construction. The significance of automobile electronics will further increase in the future, and the automobile industry as driving force for technology will bring nanoelectronic innovations to application maturity.
Lead Innovation NanoMobil
The new lead innovation NanoMobil is to trigger research and development projects in nanotechnology for applications in traffic technology, in particular in the automobile industry and its suppliers. This lead innovation continues the strategic reorientation of nanotechnology funding in Germany. Based on the well-established and internationally competitive scientific and technological basic research in Germany and the BMBF funding activities to date, the application potential of nanotechnology is now to be developed for the industrial branches which are important in Germany.
The objective is pooling the numerous research activities in the area of nanotechnology in order to reduce the time span between research and product application and to identify strategic technology developments.
The application potential of nanotechnology innovations is to be used directly for the automobile industry and its suppliers. Furthermore, the numerous research activities in the area of nanotechnology which deal with the application of research results in the automobile sector are to be pooled.
Topics for research and development in the lead innovation NanoMobil are to take into account in particular the overarching areas safety, ecology/sustainability and comfort.
Priority topics can be pursued with different research approaches and objectives in several collaborative projects. The precondition is the organization of individual research collaborations along the value added chain.
The possible market potential of the envisaged products and the impact on jobs in Germany play an important role in the choice of projects to be funded. Mere niche developments which carry no potential for later broad effects are not considered within the framework of this lead innovation. Integrating strong partners already in the research collaborations is part of the special approach of the lead innovation.
The thematic focus is to bring about a value added for the participating partners because the results of the individual research and development projects are also to be made available in a suitable way to other projects which are funded within the framework of this measure.