News - Review of Cross-Modal Technology Transfer workshop for the USE-iT and FOX projects

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Forum of European National Highway Research Laboratories

Review of Cross-Modal Technology Transfer workshop for the USE-iT and FOX projects

(Contributed by Egbert Beuving of EAPA)


FEHRL organised a workshop for the USE-iT and FOX projects on 21st January 2016 in Brussels. USE-iT and FOX are two Horizon 2020 projects. USE-iT stands for “Users, Safety, security and Energy In Transport Infrastructure” and FOX for “Forever Open infrastructure across (X) all transport modes”.

Thierry Goger (FEHRL) explained in his welcome speech that the aim of this workshop was to present preliminary results of the USE-iT and FOX projects of the most appropriate technologies and approaches that have the potential of being applied on a cross-modal basis or on at least two transport modes. Maria Cristina Marolda (Policy Officer of Research and Innovation in EC Directorate General for Mobility and Transport (DG MOVE) explained in her Opening speech that the European Commission had launched, within the Horizon 2020 (H2020) Programme, several initiatives to reflect on the necessary development of cross-modal transport infrastructure. This because the European Commission is now more looking at transport systems as one system. USE-iT, FOX and a third project called “REthinking Future Infrastructure NETworks” (REFINET) have been granted to support this work. Several partners from all transport modes and with various profiles (for example, Research Providers, Industry, Transport Authority) are now actively involved in this attempt.

Bob Collis (TRL UK) explained the structure of the Workshop. The topic areas investigated in the FOX and USE-IT projects had been divided in 6 groups: User information, Safety & Security, Energy & Carbon, Construction & Maintenance, Inspection and Recycling & Reuse. After the plenary session, the participants of the Workshop were also divided into 6 groups and they visited during the workshop the various topics investigated.

When a group visited one of the topics, a detailed description of the technologies collected in the surveys was presented and the barriers and opportunities for cross-modal application were discussed. Also potential research topics that could be of benefit to more than one mode were identified. Next to these discussions, this workshop also give a nice overview of the state-of-the-art technologies that are used or can be used in the 4 transport modes: Road, Rail, Runway and Waterway. At the end of the projects, a list of needs/a road map for future research will be created. Several activities such as desk studies, surveys and workshops have been scheduled over the coming two years to collect information and reflect together. The 2nd workshop will be held on 14th September 2016. You can also find out more about USE-iT, FOX and REFINET at an Invited Session at TRA2016 in Warsaw, Poland on 20th April 2016. Click here to access the materials from the workshop. Information on REFINET can be found at


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