2021 - GCU to design eco scooter

Novel approach to curbing emissions in India

Fri, 16 Apr 2021 16:15:00 BST

Researchers at Glasgow Caledonian University are looking to help solve India's pollution problems – with a 3D-printed eco scooter.

Professor M Emad Farrag has received funding from the Royal Academy of Engineering to design and develop a prototype of an electric scooter, which will use a compact 3D-printed electric motor – powered by a solar battery – and a suitably modified chassis.

In 3D printing, which has become a common and sustainable form of manufacturing, a 3D design is input into a specialist machine, which produces layers of material, one on top of the other, to form the finished object.

The need for an eco-friendlier scooter industry in India was identified through discussion between GCU's SMART Technology Centre and the Vellore Institute of Technology, which will be a project partner.

Professor Farrag said: "Air pollution, particularly in the form of particulate matter, which is the sum of all solid and liquid particles suspended in air, is a serious challenge in India, and transportation is a significant factor in the nation's air-quality problems.

"India was home to 21 of the 30 most polluted cities in the world in 2020. About 20% of the CO₂ emissions and 30% of particulate emissions in India are due to two-wheeled vehicles. The government has raised the prices of petrol-driven two-wheelers by 7-15%. This has driven automakers toward electric variants. The sales volume of the Indian electric two-wheeler industry is expected to massively increase from 152,000 in 2021 to 1.08 million units in 2025."

Professor Farrag hopes to have a working prototype of the scooter next year, which, he says, will be replenished by a "state-of-the-art smart charger" to increase its battery life.