UCL East


Advanced Propulsion Lab

The Advanced Propulsion Lab (APL) at UCL East will be a global centre of excellence dedicated to the decarbonisation of the transport sector.

Through APL, we will translate lab activities into real-world impact through research, development and industrialisation of vehicle electrification, supporting global reductions in the environmental impacts of transport. 

Our work will include materials discovery, fuel cells, batteries, hybrid vehicles, power trains and more.

The lab will be ideally situated at UCL East, allowing us to use the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park as an environmental laboratory for new vehicle technologies, to engage with the local community and develop the mobility technologies of the future. 

APL will feature a vehicle propulsion research laboratory specialising in advanced engines and alternative fuels, electrochemical power sources and storage (fuel cells, batteries, super capacitators and hydrogen storage) and an environmental laboratory, a live testing ground for automotive, marine, drone, mobility and (dis)ability technologies. 

Key information

UCL faculties: Engineering Sciences
People: Professor Dan Brett (Academic Lead); Dr Michael Whiteley (Strategic Alliance Director); Dr Jason Millichamp (Specialist Laboratory Planning Manager); Professor Paul Shearing (Programme Lead, Advanced Propulsion Lab)
Building: Marshgate
Focus areas: Electric vehicles; batteries; fuel cells; chemical engineering
Website: ucl.ac.uk/advanced-propulsion-lab

APL will train the next generation of international propulsion scientists and engineers, attracting the brightest students to fill the skills gap in this critical area. New programmes will create innovative entry routes to the field including Foundation programmes and a range of Master’s courses.

The local community will benefit from tangible hydrogen infrastructure in the form of a fuel cell hybrid bus for transport around UCL East and the local transportation network, a hydrogen filling station, and an outreach centre. 

As well as providing a leading hub for research and development, we will blur the lines between teaching, research, commercial innovation and outreach. No other research facility in the world currently develops combustion engine technology alongside electrochemical technologies, integrates them, and applies these innovations to such a wide range of mobility and transport modes.

The electrification of vehicles is one of the grand challenges of our time, with critical need for technologies to reduce carbon emissions and improve urban air quality. The multidisciplinary APL will conduct world-leading, translational research across a range of vehicle and power system platforms to deliver this, in partnership with industry.” – Professor Paul Shearing, Professor of Chemical Engineering

APL in the News

Wall Steet Journal, 21 January 2020 - Can Hydrogen Fuel the World's Fast-Growing Energy Needs?

Sky News, 14 February 2019 - Hydrogen-powered cards on fast trajectory, from 2m30s

BBC London Inside Out, 11 March 2019 - Hydrogen Cars: a greener future for London?

YouTube Widget Placeholderhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j-7UV8Vmxuw