The GTS Foundation is trying hard to get funded by EU Horizon 2020 through the FET OPEN calls, Future and Emerging Technologies, Open to any novel and plausible technology off the roadmap. Four proposals have been submitted: September 2015, acronym GTS, rejected; May 2016, acronym GTSX, rejected; and January 2017, two parallel proposals, due to the complex interdisciplinarity, acronyms MAG and NET; MAG and NET are still under evaluation.
Our focus on FET OPEN depends on the fact that no other research funding programme is so wide open to "disruptive but plausible concepts". The "DNA" of GTS is precisely that.
The proposal named MAG (click to open proposal) contains advanced electric, MAGnetic and operational experiments, laboratory test of a demonstrator, and a full-scale mock-up cabin. The research will be performed by the Department of Energy Technology in Aalborg University, Denmark, together with the Faculty of Engineering at Mondragon University in the Basque province, Spain. Both institutes develop excellent research in groundbreaking electromagnetic applications. Bjerking Engineering Company in Uppsala/Stockholm and The Centre for ECO2Vehicle Design at Royal Institute of Technology, KTH, Stockholm, both Sweden, will design and construct the full scale guideways, pillars, pylons and cabins; Both institutes have advanced know-how for this kind of research and applications together with Yovinn, Gothenburg and AyCrete, Stockholm as subcontractors.
The proposal named NET (click to open proposal) will research all logistics, sustainable, environmental, financial and social aspects of the foundational GTS NETworks. Particularly the effects of GTS will be studied in two site cases in Uppsala and London, see more below.
Environmental analyses will be performed by BOnDS cooperative, Breda, Netherlands; BOnDS have a broad experience in transport and environmental research in local and regional planning.
Logistics of GTS will be analysed by the Centre for Operational Research and Logistics (CORL) at University of Portsmouth, UK, and by Logistikcentrum, Gothenburg, Sweden. They will both apply their analyses at the site cases in London and Uppsala. Logistikcentrum will also execute comprehensive Cost Benefit Analyses (CBA) by Transek, and CORL will develop understanding of the impact of GTS in the greater London area by Transport Systems Catapult (TSC).
The proposals are independent of each other. They can be performed both or only one by EU support; In the latter case support for the rejected proposal will be applied from other sources.
Uppsala - Ultuna Link - site case
Uppsala, with more than 200.000 inhabitants, is the northern node in the Uppsala – Stockholm labour market and business region. Uppsala has two universities and thriving trade and industry, e.g. prominent research and business in areas such as life sciences and energy physics. The population, commuting and business trips in the Uppsala-Arlanda-Stockholm corridor are growing rapidly. So is the city of Uppsala.
The projected population growth for Uppsala is an increase up to 135 000 new inhabitants and 70 000 new jobs by 2050. This means that by 2050 the city must serve a population of 340 000 inhabitants.
In 2016 the city council of Uppsala adopted a new comprehensive plan for city development until the 2050:ies. The plan provides a framework that can meet the projected growth in a sustainable manner.
Four complementary urban centres are to be interconnected with each other and the inner city with fast and frequent public transportation links with high capacity (see figure).
London Docklands - Canary Wharf - case
Although existing road network and public transport systems (such as bus and metro/DLR) exist, the connections between the two sides of the Thames (squares 2, 3 and 4 in Figure), especially for non-motorised mode, are poor, and connectivity between DLR and traditional metro lines is below the average in London. This can be observed looking into the Public Transport Accessibility (PTA) score, which is a measure of the accessibility of a point to the public transport network, taking into account walk access time and service availability. The boroughs covered by the case study present an average value of 3.6 (with certain census wards below 3.0) compared to a London average of 4.0 and surrounding areas with PTA score above 5.0. Recently this gap of accessibility has been highlighted by a report identifying the need for new river crossings in East London. After a consultation period with almost 7,500 responses received, the analysis undertaken has shown that over 90 percent of respondents expressed support for new crossings and the majority of feedback supported the introduction of new fixed link crossings. The proposed GTS line then will complement the planned pedestrian and cycle crossing linking Rotherhithe to Canary Wharf and the greener Silvertown tunnel (see bottom left and right indicators in the figure).
This site presents an interesting configuration since it has a similar catchment area and expected growth rate of the Uppsala site in terms of population/jobs, but since it is located within a bigger city like London, different dynamics and needs will be identified and modelled, including the higher level of multimodality.