Transport de demain : l’intelligence au service de l’environnement

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If the end of thermal energy marks a decisive step towards carbon neutrality in transport, the advent of new modes of transport, electric in particular, will only happen under certain conditions.

First of all, theplanned advent of the electric vehicle does not go without asking certain questions. Today, the price of electric vehicles, much higher than that of thermal automobiles, remains prohibitive for many users. Of course, we can count on a gradual decline of their price. However, improving performance, particularly with regard to vehicle autonomy, with new generations of batteries, will tend to push prices upwards. It is currently difficult to assess what the real investment linked to the acquisition of an electric vehicle will be in 2035 without subsidies.

What’s more, by then, the transport landscape should be disrupted. Infrastructure linked to the electrification of transport is already deployed on a large scale, and this will accelerate. Between 45,000 and 60,000 new charging points should see the light of day, by 2025, only for electrified freight transport. If the supply of electricity relating to these new modes of transport don’t worry RTE for the momentthe situation appears more uncertain in the long term, particularly after 2035.

Different technologies for more efficient transport

To limit the ecological impact of transport in the future, it is imperative to make it more efficient. Different technologies can be implemented for this. Artificial intelligence is one of them. The current deployment of vehicle connectivity, between them and with the road infrastructure, will allow, thanks to artificial intelligence, to benefit from more efficient individual and collective transport : management of road congestion, traffic regulation, optimization of journeys and vehicle energy consumption, etc. All these improvements provide better service to usersat the same time as they optimize the overall energy consumption of the transport sector.

Another fundamental element for the future of transport,intermodality, which consists of using several modes of transport during the same trip. This makes it possible to manage flows of users or goods more efficiently, and therefore to optimize the energy needed for travel.

Collective transport and carpooling are also strong levers which are already developed and encouraged currently, and which will become essential in the transport landscape by 2035. This is already a reality in many large French cities, or The important infrastructures developed to set up bus and tram lines allow the latter to operate on almost privatized traffic routes. Currently, these lanes, for buses for example, are in direct contact with the traffic lanes for private vehicles, but this should evolve. And this is important, because the empowerment of transport currently requires the use of dedicated lanes, for reasons of reliability and safety. The deployment of autonomous shuttles, in Norway for example, suggests that the path to autonomous collective transport will involve the installation of these devices on reserved lanes. In France, 100 to 300 autonomous shuttles should be implemented by 2030.

To conclude, if the path leading to carbon neutrality in transport in 2050 passes through technological breakthroughs – already underway – in vehicle propulsion modes, a revolution in more efficient and intelligent uses must develop simultaneously.

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