Berlin, 23 October 2023
The CAETS 2023 Annual Meetings and Technical Symposium, hosted by the Croatian Academy of Engineering, took place in Zagreb, Croatia from 9 to 11 October 2023. The theme of this year’s CAETS symposium was “e2-mobility”. More than 200 experts from science and industry from 32 countries discussed trends and challenges in the electrification of transport. Innovative battery technology and sustainable fuels were also presented and discussed. A summary of the latest findings on autonomous driving and rethinking transport entitled “Making the shift from the private car to public transport” rounded out the programme.
Ulrich Wagner, acatech member, and experts from Australia, Sweden, Croatia and Denmark discussed the electrification of transport in the opening session of the symposium entitled “Electrification of Transport in Integrated Fully Decarbonized Societies”. Participants agreed that the electricity requirement in the mobility sector is going to increase in the future. This energy must therefore be used efficiently, and renewable energy must be expanded globally. However, at the same time, diversified and, above all, reliable energy partnerships with international supplier countries must be built. Another topic was the creation of a needs-based charging and refuelling infrastructure for alternative drives and fuels catering to all means of transport.
In other keynotes and panel discussions, it was established that automated, smart driving is a technological driver for the mobility transformation. To realise autonomous smart driving, however, a primary condition is the interconnectedness of all providers and the digitalisation of the transport infrastructure in order to achieve service provision throughout the intermodal mobility chain. In addition to technological innovations and efficiency enhancements in transport, systemic changes are needed to achieve sustainable and socially just mobility. Integrated planning of space and mobility is the basis for the development of urban regions geared towards accessibility and proximity.
To conclude, the experts reflected on the fact that the decarbonisation of transport will change how we transport people and goods immensely. While electrification can help to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and local emissions, it will also bring about great change in the car production and maintenance chains.
acatech members Ulrich Wagner and Frank Behrendt are members of the CAETS Energy working group. On conclusion of the project CAETS Energy Report 2022, which focused on reducing greenhouse gas emissions, the group reformed and came up with initial ideas for a further joint publication.
The annual CAETS Communication Prize is designed to encourage scientists and engineers to communicate effectively and is awarded for communication of excellence and innovation in technological sciences or engineering. Frank Behrendt was a member of the judging panel. This year’s winner of the prize is Caitlin Howell from the University of Maine.
At the CAETS Council Meeting and at the CAETS Board Meeting on 10 October 2023, the Finnish Academy of Technical Sciences assumed the CAETS presidency and announced that the next CAETS Annual Meetings and Technical Symposium will take place in July 2024 in Helsinki, Finland, and the theme will be “Carbon Neutral Technologies and Society”.