Research partnership to focus on new technologies in transport

University of the Sunshine Coast

A new research partnership between USC and the Queensland Government will help prepare the state for futuristic transport that uses emerging technologies to better connect people and goods in more sustainable, efficient and convenient ways.

USC Senior Lecturer in Environmental Engineering Dr Helen Fairweather said the three-year Transport Academic Partnership, including the Department of Transport and Main Roads’ $730,400 contribution, was exciting for the University’s students and academics, as well as the wider community and environment.

Dr Fairweather said a foundation USC Chair of Sustainable Transport Engineering would be appointed soon at its Moreton Bay campus, which would become a field site for testing the cutting-edge transport ideas.

“Transport is changing rapidly, and we need more research that targets the interface between civil infrastructure and the Internet of Things,” she said.

“The key questions are: How do we move people and goods without relying on systems for fuel-emitting cars, and how can technology help us achieve that?

“It’s not just about electric cars and light rail. It’s about how telecommunications and advanced analytics can change how our transport network operates and how more sustainable service can be provided.”

USC’s efforts to achieve a more sustainable future for all were recently recognised in the 2021 Times Higher Education (THE) Impact Rankings, where USC placed 26th of 1,115 universities worldwide.

Transport and Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey said the Queensland Government welcomed the opportunity to work with USC to look ahead at new, innovative ideas for the future of transport.

“This grant will enable USC to research and provide insights into the type of technologies we’ll all be using to move from A to B in the next few decades,” Mr Bailey said.

“Queensland is well placed to be at the forefront of transport innovation, and I look forward to the team’s work exploring how future technology can boost our capability to deliver a single, integrated transport network accessible to everyone.”

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