What can we expect for the future of mobility and transportation systems around the world? And how might these new systems impact society in general as they are implemented? Finally, when can we expect to see the results of the ongoing development of advanced mobility technologies?
In a new podcast, Nand Kochhar, VP of Automotive and Transportation Industries at Siemens Digital Industries Software discussed these questions and more with Laurel Ruma of MIT Technology Review. Nand noted that future systems may be far more multimodal than we are used to today. Today, most of our everyday transportation needs are met by a few types of transportation: personal cars, public busses, and bicycles probably being the most common. In the future, Nand sees a broader mix of vehicle types being used to move people and goods around the world, even mentioning the possibility of flying cars with vertical take-off and landing capabilities. As the modes of transportation become more varied, transportation systems will become more connected and intelligent to offer users a frictionless experience.
For Nand, the possibilities of a connected, intelligent network of autonomous or partially autonomous vehicles are exciting. Particularly because of the potential of such a system to offer benefits to society in general. One such example is the additional freedom it could provide to people who are unable to drive, “Just imagine people in our own families who are in that stage where they’re not able to drive today. Now, you’re able to provide them freedom.”
Of course, there are challenges and pitfalls along the way. Among the most significant of these challenges will be the testing and certification of autonomous vehicles, ensuring their ability to safely navigate varied and dynamic driving environments. The answer, according to Nand, will come through simulation and the digital twin, “So, you see simulation and software becoming a central piece of product development—and, in my mind, maybe a strong statement, but the only way to go forward. Any company that is not into simulations will be left behind, in my perspective.”
Nand and Laurel cover a lot more ground in the episode as well, ranging from the progress on self-driving vehicles, the growing importance of software in the automotive world, and how developments in the automotive space may be applied to other industries, such as in materials engineering or global supply chain management. You can listen to the new podcast here!