The need for mobility of people worldwide continues to increase. This is due to economic factors, but also to migration, tourism, and the increasing global networking of many people. Thus, the associated problems such as climate-damaging emissions, overloaded transport infrastructures, accidents, and noise are becoming more acute. These developments are concentrated in urban agglomerations, which are subject to further densification worldwide, and are increasingly hindering the creation of livable environments. At the same time, exactly the opposite developments are threatening the quality of life and mobility in rural areas. Electromobility, including electrically assisted bicycles and scooters, flying taxis, and even inner-city cable cars are intended to address these problems.
ITAS primarily investigates new mobility concepts, which deal with technical innovations on the one hand and with changing mobility patterns of people on the other. For example, we analyze the possibilities of autonomous vehicles as well as the ethical challenges of their use in urban environments, but also in the surrounding areas.
Sustainability of biofuels
ITAS also intensively studies the sustainability of second generation biofuels (synthetic fuels from agricultural and forestry residues) and third generation biofuels (fuels from algae). In the projects Energy System 2050, reFuels, and Photofuel, the entire “life cycle” is examined and compared with that of conventional fuels and battery electric vehicles.
Automated driving and digitalization
Digitalization is regarded as an important factor for innovations in the mobility system. It enables a better networking of different modes of transport for multi- and intermodal transport services. It is intended to improve road safety or help to establish new mobility services. ITAS studies the possible design of such innovations and the effects that can be expected after their implementation. In the VI-DAS project, for example, researchers have analyzed the ethical and social aspects of insuring automated vehicles and created a guide for technology development. This provides an overview of possible environmental consequences as well as the effects on the distribution of safety risks or the social participation of elderly, physically impaired and socioeconomically disadvantaged people.
Socio-technical change and future mobility
Technical and social change are strongly interconnected and influence each other – especially in the mobility sector. Against this background, work at ITAS focuses on technical and social developments and their potentials to change established mobility patterns and enable future mobility concepts (e.g., personal air transport systems or urban ropeway systems). In the process, researchers develop options and strategies for their political design and implementation.
Urban technology assessment examines urban innovation and transformation, e.g. the development of climate-neutral and smart cities or their socio-technical resilience. The research interest focuses on the interplay between urban technologies, culture, and social movements.
Projects on the topic
- Helmholtz-Initiative Energy System 2050
- Opportunities and obstacles of urban ropeway systems in Baden-Württemberg
- VI-DAS – Vision Inspired Driver Assistance Systems
To the complete project list
- Alternative drive concepts (electromobility/hydrogen):
Dr. Marcel Weil
- Automated driving and digitalization:
Dr. Martina Haase
- Socio-technical change and future mobility:
- Urban research:
Dr. Ulrich Ufer
Tel.: +49 721 608-26796
Publications on the topic
Life Cycle Assessment of Total Fatty Acid (TFA) Production from Microalgae Nannochloropsis oceanica at Different Sites and Under Different Sustainability Scenarios.
2021. BioEnergy research. doi:10.1007/s12155-021-10279-z
Techno-economic analysis of hydrogen enhanced methanol to gasoline process from biomass-derived synthesis gas.
2021. Fuel processing technology, 216, Ar.-Nr. 106776. doi:10.1016/j.fuproc.2021.106776
reFuels im Stakeholder-Diskurs: Eine Positionsanalyse von Verbänden aus Wirtschaft, Umwelt und Zivilgesellschaft.
2021. Karlsruher Institut für Technologie (KIT). doi:10.5445/IR/1000128394
Gesellschaftliche Implikationen von regenerativen Kraftstoffen im Expertendiskurs.
2021. Karlsruher Institut für Technologie (KIT). doi:10.5445/IR/1000128396
Regenerative Kraftstoffe im System betrachtet: zur Rolle von reFuels in Energiesystemanalysen.
2021. Karlsruher Institut für Technologie (KIT). doi:10.5445/IR/1000128395
Advanced Metabolic Engineering Approaches and Renewable Energy to Improve Environmental Benefits of Algal Biofuels: LCA of Large-scale Biobutanol Production with Cyanobacteria Synechocystis PCC6803.
2021. BioEnergy research. doi:10.1007/s12155-021-10323-y
Engineering Biocatalytic Solar Fuel Production: The PHOTOFUEL Consortium.
2021. Trends in biotechnology. doi:10.1016/j.tibtech.2021.01.003
Multi criteria decision analysis for sustainability assessment of 2nd generation biofuels.
2020. Procedia CIRP, 90, 226–231. doi:10.1016/j.procir.2020.02.124
Acceptability of genetically engineered algae biofuels in Europe: opinions of experts and stakeholders.
2020. Biotechnology for biofuels, 13 (1), Article: 92. doi:10.1186/s13068-020-01730-y
Sustainability assessment of innovative energy technologies-integrated biomass-based production of fuel, electricity and heat.
2019. 27th European Biomass Conference and Exhibition, EUBCE 2019; Lisbon; Portugal; 27 May 2019 through 30 May 2019, 1642–1653, ETA-Florence Renewable Energies. doi:10.5071/27thEUBCE2019-4AV.1.13
Factors Affecting Microalgae Production for Biofuels and the Potentials of Chemometric Methods in Assessing and Optimizing Productivity.
2019. Cells, 8 (8), Article: 851. doi:10.3390/cells8080851
Integrating power-to-gas in the biogas value chain: analysis of stakeholder perception and risk governance requirements.
2019. Energy, Sustainability and Society, 9 (1), Article: 38. doi:10.1186/s13705-019-0220-5
Sector coupling established by the technology partnership reFuels - rethinking fuels.
2019. 12. International Colloquium Fuels, Esslingen, 25 - 26 Juni 2019, 5–10, Technische Akademie Esslingen (TAE)
Handlungsleitfaden Urbane Luftseilbahnen. Empfehlungen aus dem Projekt "Hoch hinaus".
2018. Karlsruher Institut für Technologie (KIT)
Urbane Seilbahnen - Herausforderungen der Diffusion eines ungewohnten Verkehrsmittels.
2018. "Grand Challenges" meistern : Der Beitrag der Technikfolgenabschätzung. Hrsg.: M. Decker, Nomos Verlagsgesellschaft
Flying high in urban ropeways? A socio-technical analysis of drivers and obstacles for urban ropeway systems in Germany.
2017. Transportation research / D, 61 (Part B), 339–355. doi:10.1016/j.trd.2017.07.019
Urbane Seilbahnen in Baden-Württemberg. Explorative Analyse von Bürgersicht, Expertenmeinungen und Planungshürden. Projekt “Hoch hinaus in Baden-Württemberg: Machbarkeit, Chancen und Hemmnisse urbaner Luftseilbahnen in Baden-Württemberg”.
2017. Institut für Technikfolgenabschätzung und Systemanalyse (ITAS)