Understanding R&D in the transport and storage sector

This sector includes everything from bikes, cars, planes and trains to racing cars and space rockets. It is an area rich in R&D however many of the opportunities remain unexploited.

In the coming years, the way in which we explore our environments will be changing as electric, self-driving cars become the norm, hovering trains are developed and planes become super-sonic. The presence of R&D within these industries is constant as the very nature of the work is to push the boundaries of current transport systems.

Examples of problems to be solved through R&D within this sector

  • What materials to use to create these lightweight, robust and passenger-friendly craft
  • How to effectively use technology to safely navigate driverless cars on our roads
  • How to make such new and exciting products accessible to the general public through cost efficiency and ease of use
  • How to reduce travel times by looking at the aerodynamics of each machine
  • Creating a green solution to the energy needed to propel such extreme forms of transport
  • How to pack items to be posted or stored without damaging contents

Examples of what constitutes R&D in these sectors

The HMRC test as to whether a Company is performing R&D is whether there is ‘appreciable improvement’ in a situation as a result of ‘addressing a scientific and technological uncertainty’.

  • Developing new fully-compostable packing materials
  • Innovating and experimenting with new materials for the manufacture of transport systems
  • Testing and re-testing computer systems designed to enable driverless cars
  • Creating low waste coolants to use in refrigerated trucks
  • Using big data to create software to scan for competitive flight prices
  • Experimenting with different materials and patterns to create packaging which is fit for purpose and reduces waste