Test Area Autonomous Driving Baden-Württemberg is ready

The Test Area Autonomous Driving Baden-Württemberg (TAF BW) is like a laboratory with everyday road traffic scenarios where applications of connected and autonomous driving can be tested. Companies and research institutions can use it to test future-oriented technologies and services under everyday conditions.

At the project presentation on November 12, 2021, experts from the test field consortium gave high-ranking representatives from industry, science and politics an insight into the project results. The Minister of Transport Baden-Württemberg, Winfried Hermann, was also a guest and said about TAF BW: "This is an important step for the development of climate-friendly transport solutions, towards a digital society and the improvement of mobility."

The project event with lectures and presentations about the TAF BW marked the conclusion of the scientific development of the test field. "The Test Area Autonomous Driving Baden-Württemberg is another milestone in Baden-Württemberg's history of mobility. Important impetus was given during the project period and needs for action were addressed to the state and federal level were identified," explained Prof. Dr.-Ing. J. Marius Zöllner, professor at KIT as well as board member at the FZI Research Center for Information Technology, which leads the consortium. On the following day, intensive dialogue was sought with citizens in Karlsruhe and Heilbronn, who were also able to find out about activities related to TAF BW.

The test area is ready for funding projects and industrial use

The operation of the TAF BW will be continued by the Karlsruher Verkehrsverbund (KVV): "As the operator, all interested customers from industry and research are welcome to contact the KVV as a service partner for test field use. We are pleased to be actively involved in shaping this innovation process for the mobility of the future," explains KVV Managing Director Dr. Alexander Pischon. In addition to an extensive range of services of networked infrastructure, it includes over 200 km of all types of public roads in Karlsruhe and Heilbronn and is unique in its diversity. Both a user-oriented and demand-oriented expansion of the TAF BW as well as a technical and scientific monitoring of the test operation are possible.

Several projects that would like to use the TAF BW in the future are already in the start and application phase. For example, an intelligent logistics solution for goods deliveries on the last mile is being researched. Its traffic, economic and social impact is also being investigated.

A recording of the lectures is available on YouTube.

About the Test Area Autonomous Driving Baden-Württemberg

At the Test Area Autonomous Driving Baden-Württemberg (TAF BW), companies and research institutions can test future-oriented technologies and services related to connected and automated driving in everyday road traffic, such as automated driving of cars, buses or commercial vehicles like street cleaning or delivery services. In addition, the regulatory and legal framework conditions can be evaluated and updated. For this purpose, during the set-up phase, traffic areas of various types were prepared, highly accurate 3D maps were generated and sensors and computers for real-time recording of traffic and its influencing factors as well as communication units were installed. The legal, organisational and insurance framework for the operation of the infrastructure and potential applications of autonomous mobility was also created.

The consortium consists of the cities of Karlsruhe, Bruchsal and Heilbronn as well as the research institutions FZI Research Center for Information Technology, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), Karlsruhe University of Applied Sciences (Die HKA), the Fraunhofer Institute of Optronics, System Technologies and Image Exploitation IOSB and Heilbronn University. The development of the test area is supported by a large number of partners from industry and science in Baden-Württemberg. The operation with security control centre, IT administration, sales, accounting and controlling is made possible by the Karlsruher Verkehrsverbund (KVV) as an external and neutral operating company.

About the FZI Research Center for Information Technology

The FZI Research Centre for Information Technology, with its headquarters in Karlsruhe and a branch office in Berlin, is a non-profit institution for information technology application research and technology transfer. It brings the latest scientific findings in information technology to companies and public institutions and qualifies young people for academic and business careers or the leap into self-employment. Supervised by professors from various faculties, the research groups at the FZI develop interdisciplinary concepts, software, hardware and system solutions for their clients and implement the solutions found as prototypes. The FZI House of Living Labs provides a unique research environment for application research. The FZI is an innovation partner of the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT).