News from Avantis – a sustainable mobility center from 2020

In the first quarter of 2020, the RWTH spin-off PEM Motion will move into the former production facility of the photovoltaic manufacturer Trina Solar based at the Avantis business park as the main tenant. Felix Delahaye, Managing Director of Avantis GOB & Services NV, welcomes the ambitious pioneering project: “PEM Motion GmbH and their partners are basically closing the circle around the idea of creating a science & business park that emerged at the end of the 90s. The past few years have successfully shown that commerce works at Avantis. Now the focus is increasingly moving towards research and development. We are convinced that the establishment of the competence center can also be an impetus for further settlements in this area and for fruitful partnerships with regard to mobility in and around the business park.” PEM Motion GmbH was founded in 2014 as a part of the StreetScooter development in order to make knowledge gained from the work of the Chair for Electromobility Components at the RWTH University accessible to other companies and thus contribute to the mobility and energy transition. The company’s projects range from the development and testing of battery technologies and car body construction to prototype construction and cover all engineering issues related to electromobility. In the meantime, around 90 employees worldwide work for automobile manufacturers and mobility providers at three locations in Europe and North America and are now also expanding to Avantis. In addition to PEM Motion, other partners working in the area of fuel cell production, infrastructure, logistics and mobility are moving to the new location – including, among others. the Alternative Energy Driven Solutions GmbH, Velocity and Ducktrain. The goal is to set up in the medium term a center of competence for all challenges regarding sustainable mobility and logistics at the Avantis location, which would enable quick solutions at short distances. This competence center aims to realize a mobility concept for the employees of the companies based at Avantis, which consists of a mix of velocity stations, charging stations for electric vehicles, pool electric scooters and electric vehicles, car sharing and public transport, and will be further developed. The topic of hydrogen as an energy source for the transport sector should also be considered. It is also planned to implement a “humanotop” on a small scale at the new location, i.e. to provide all the necessary resources from energy to water and food supplies as well mobility and infrastructure. Prof. Dr. Manfred Sicking, member of the board of directors of Avantis and city councilor for economic development, social affairs and housing at the city of Aachen, adds: “The competence center “Future Mobility” might be able to provide answers to some of the most urging questions of our time. Once again, it shows that universities from Aachen and their spin-offs are of a great importance for the development of the region. The business park Avantis, being innovative at its own at the time of its creation as a cross-border business area, offers the opportunity to keep such innovative spin-offs in the city of Aachen and enables their further development close to the universities”